Merry Christmas – December 22, 2023

Every year, the day after Thanksgiving, my family decorates the house for Christmas. Usually, we have Christmas music playing in the background. Sometimes, we end the day watching a Christmas movie. All these activities serve to place us into the “Christmas spirit.” We then spend the rest of December with a warm fuzzy feeling, looking at the lights, listening to the songs, and anticipating Christmas Day. For whatever reason, I have not been in the Christmas spirit this year. Maybe it is our unseasonably warm weather (until this week). Maybe it is the different December schedule now that the boys are older. For whatever reason, I have found myself commenting that it doesn’t feel like Christmas.

Over the last few days, I have contemplated my lack of Christmas feeling. I concluded that this is not necessarily a bad thing. So often, my Christmas spirit centers around things that have nothing to do with the true meaning of Christmas. I love the feeling of looking at lights, listening to Frosty the Snowman, and watching feel-good Christmas movies. However, this year, I have focused less on these things and more on how Christmas fits into God’s eternal plan. It makes me wonder if I have missed this vital aspect of Christmas in previous years.

Man’s fall into sin did not surprise God. In eternity past, God determined to send His Son to redeem the people He had not yet created. So, when man fell into sin, God promised that the woman’s seed (Jesus) would crush the serpent’s head (sin and Satan). Thousands of years past, sin destroyed the world, yet the seed had not arrived. Until that first Christmas, all seemed lost. Yet, at the right time, Christ came. God became flesh in a small farm town outside Jerusalem and dwelt among us. Yet He did not come for Christmas. He came for Good Friday and Easter. For through His sacrifice on the cross, we have life eternal.

Yet, even then, the story of Christmas points forward to more than Good Friday and Easter. We have the promise in John 14 that Christ will return for us. Although it has been thousands of years, and all may seem lost, the day is coming when Jesus will come again and eradicate sin and its effects. Our broken bodies will be made whole. Conflicts will cease. Death will be no more. When we celebrate Christmas, we are also celebrating Christ’s second coming. The difference will be that the Christmas feeling will last for all eternity at that time.

As you celebrate this year, remember that the sorrow caused by sin will cease to reign. Thorns will no longer infest the ground. Christ will be known throughout the earth. And we will reign with Him. In your sorrow, look up! Your King is coming. Even so, Lord Jesus, come quickly!