For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. —Romans 15:4

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Spirit of Christmas

Luke 2:8-14
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

I usually start thinking about Christmas in October; preparing my list of what we want to get for who and figuring out if I am making any of the gifts. But I have a confession to make. When my thoughts went to planning for another hectic season of busy, busy, busy I decided I would rather be Scrooge. I thought about not putting up our tree, not worrying about gifts and not being too busy. But like Scrooge I was visited by a Spirit. Stay with me here. I’m not saying that three spirits came and dragged me around my life; I am saying that the Holy Spirit, my comforter, prompted me to pray about Christmas.

When I finally stopped feeling sorry for myself and talked to God about my issues, I saw Christmas with fresh eyes. I saw Jesus in the manger and on the cross. I saw the joy in my grandchildren’s eyes. I saw opportunities to celebrate with family and friends the joyous event of the birth of the Savior of the world. Like the shepherds I stand in awe of the truth. God sent his Son to save me. He made a way for me to spend eternity in heaven. He loves me and because of this I celebrate this Christmas season with praise. Everything I do for Christmas is done as a praise to God, even lighting my Christmas tree. I praise God for his giving Spirit this Christmas.

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