I spaced. In the midst of the craziness of the ministry here, I completely spaced and forgot this was my day to post.
So, I’ll be very brief and share with all of you what I share with my congregation every year at this time.
Even non-Christians like to ponder the idea of the “spirit of Christmas”. I believe it’s good for us to ponder this too. But as a follower of Jesus and a believer in the bible as God’s Word, I believe we should at least make an effort to define the “spirit of Christmas” in a way that lines up with what the bible teaches.
Here’s what I tell the people in my congregation:
“If you want to really express the “spirit of Christmas”: consider thinking about one or more of these people:
1. The neighbor who hates you no matter what you’ve done to try to live peaceably next door to them.
2. The relative who talks negative about you even though you’ve helped that person out financially or by connecting him or her with friends or relatives when they had a need for a job or help in some other way.
3. The co-worker whose lack of work you covered and yet they still got the recognition for having accomplished the job in such a great manner….and actually got a promotion because of it, a promotion that you deserved.
4. The thief who would steal from you if they could get access to any of the things you own.
5. The murderer who would take your life if he was ever given a chance to be a part of your world.
Then, take the money and the time you were going to use to show your love to family and friends, and lavish it upon any one of the people above.
If you actually did that, you’d be approaching the biblical concept behind “the spirit of Christmas”.
This is what our God did in sending His Son, and what that Son taught in the first recorded sermon we have from Him. Matt 5:43-48