Santa. Reindeer. Cookies and Hot Chocolate. Christmas Trees. Presents. Yuletide carols being sung by a choir. And all of it bowing down to baby Jesus in a manger. Surrounded by wise man and shepherds, Mary and Joseph, and the angels singing on high.
This is Christmas. It is absolutely, without a doubt my favorite time of the year! There is something heartwarming and nostalgic about this time that strikes a chord with me. I love it!
This season is not this way for so many. For some reason, the broken-hearted have been on my mind more than usual, as we draw closer to our beloved day.
Perhaps it started at a Fall Retreat, praying for middle school students who were “not looking forward to the holidays” because of family struggles. Maybe it was the numerous grandparents I have prayed for that want salvation for their kids and grandkids. I’m sure it is also a school principal who stands before a congregation with tears in his eyes, saying he would give every dime he has to have a cure for cancer as his wife fights day by day with this horrible sickness. Likely, it is all of the above, and I could surely continue.
It begs the deeper question in my heart: how many have I walked by without taking notice of the hurt and heartache? Thank God we have a blessed hope in a Savior that walks through the trials of life with us. What of those that don’t know Him? What hope do they have?
Jesus came to give that hope! He came to give life to the lifeless. Joy to the depressed. Strength to the weak. But we are to be His hands and feet. Let us not forget our part of the equation this season.
He is so much more than a baby in a manger. So much more than a reason to shower gifts on one another. Definitely more than an excuse to gain a few holiday pounds. Let’s love big this holiday season, sing loud, pray hard, and serve well.
If Jesus truly is Immanuel, God with us, then let us bring that Joy to the World!