Christmas is unlike any other holiday, for many reasons (other than the obvious – celebration of the birth of our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ). Christmas (including the entire Christmas season, but especially the day) brings with it a Santa bag full of emotions for many of us.
The celebration of the birth of the Christ Child is a joyous occasion that’s unparalleled. The anticipation of and finally the actual opening of gifts is a fun thing. Watching others open heartfelt gifts we’ve given imbues a special satisfaction that comes from imparting that happiness to others. The hustle and bustle that goes along with preparing for those times can be demanding, if not down right aggravating at times.
Still, there’s the melancholy remembrance of loved ones we’ve lost (nearly always too soon) – when the lost has been recent, the surrealness and pain is all the more acute. Families may simply be separated or full of conflict and drama worthy of its own reality TV show. Perhaps the mixed bag of emotions includes the pain of lost jobs or relationships that seem to collapsed out of nowhere, and the uncertainty that invariable accompanies such tragedies.
Your life experience almost certainly includes at least two or more of these situations. Regardless, life on planet earth is a mixed bag that we cannot fix (or even deal with, in many cases) on our own. That’s why the Christ Child was born. To help us deal with things that cannot be fixed, to provide us with hope to bring to our lives that which we cannot gain on our own – love, hope, anticipation of a better tomorrow. But more importantly – salvation.
So, as we wrap up Christmas 2013, remember the God became flesh and dwelt among us – Immanuel – God among us. Our hope is found by placing our heart in His hands. Look towards the new year with a renewed hope and trust in the One who came to earth so He could better understand both our joys and our struggles in a real and tangible way. Encourage your groups to respond by being different from the culture around us in 2014 by the way we live, act, walk, and talk. By worshiping the One through who all things were made with all that we are – Jesus Christ.
Group Life Deacon