Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Remember that Christmas is a Birthday

My grandson, Konnor, was King for a day when he turned eight years old. He was the center of attention. In the morning, my wife and I called and wished him a happy birthday. He took treats to school, got cards in the mail, and had a birthday party with his own customized birthday cake, compliments of grandma.

When we celebrate someone’s birthday, it is normal to make them the center of attention. They are the focus of the party, gifts and treats. It is a happy time, surrounding the celebration of their birth.

Christmas Day is a gigantic worldwide birthday celebration for Jesus. Although Christians honor Him all year long, it is a concentrated time to remember the day when he came from heaven to earth in miraculous fashion being born through His virgin mother, Mary.

The modern Christmas Day does not seem to reflect the celebration of Jesus’ birth. Rather, it more bears the marks of an annual family gathering accompanied with gift giving and food while the Birthday Boy sits quietly in the background.

How can we make Christmas Day more about Jesus? It is very simple. Go to God in prayer and say, “God what would your Son like for His birthday?” I believe God may show you the two greatest commandments in the Bible, which can serve as the two greatest Christmas gifts for Jesus. “You shall love the Lord your God . . . You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (The Bible, Matt. 22:37-40, ESV) First, give the gift of love to Jesus. Second, give the gift of love to others.

On Christmas morning, we can show our love for Jesus by dropping to our knees and yielding ourselves anew to Him giving praise for who He is and what He has done. Then throughout Christmas Day, we can show our love for others in three ways: 1) Going and sharing the good news of Christ with someone in a creative way. 2) Going and giving something to a person in need – a meal, toy or clothing. 3) Going and visiting someone in need – a widow, foster child, or someone in the hospital.

Take the challenge. Give Jesus what He wants for His birthday. Then watch your Christmas be filled with a divine and everlasting hope.