Making Christmas About More Than Presents
Words are so very important in life. Words have meaning, some have several meanings, and some have just a few, or only one. How we use words is critical in life. They can be the difference between true love, care, concern, and respect. but they can also lead to great misunderstandings, angst, fear, regret, and even anger. We have become so relaxed and spoiled in our world today, with the various freedoms and advantages we have, that we don't pay as much respect to words, and how we use them, as we should. Thus we have all seen examples where the results, of misused or misunderstood words, often end up quite different than the intent.
However, no matter how you use the word or think you understand the meaning, there is no questioning the word Christmas. Have you ever looked up key words or phrases in a dictionary; you'll generally see multiple paragraphs of definitions. When you look up the word Christmas, regardless of publisher, you'll only see one key definition; "commemorates the birth of Christ." I'm sure most of you know the meaning of the word or name "Christ," but for those who may not, Christ simply means: Messiah; the expected king and deliverer of the Jews, or Jesus; which means savior. "MAS" in Christmas means to commemorate or celebrate.
Jesus or Jesus Christ is the name of the man who Christians know is the son of God, and whose teachings are the basis of Christianity. Many people have been named Jesus before and since the one true (biblical) Jesus. But only this Jesus is referred to as Jesus Christ or Christ Jesus. The word Christ further signifies his unique identity and mission. Christ means anointed, according to several dictionary's. Anointed is the Greek word for the Hebrew "Messiah," which is Jesus’ official title. In the New Testament, this title is linked with Jesus 514 times.
So, at this time of year, December 25th, we celebrate Christmas; Christ's commemoration or celebration. While numerous people turn this into family celebrations, gift giving, commercial pursuits, simple holidays from work, or justification to pursue various activities, it is clear by definition that this day is to be a celebration of Jesus Christ, who came to this earth, humbled in human form, for the sole purpose of saving his/God's people. While Jesus himself would likely not mind his commemoration being a reason for family to gather in love for one another, we must not forget the true meaning behind this day.
The Bible book of Luke does a great job of portraying the events surrounding the birth of Jesus and gives us true insight into God's love for us and what he did to save his people. If you have not read the book of Luke, I strongly suggest you should. I personally am very partial to a recording of "The Meaning of Christmas", performed and recorded by Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians in 1963. I grew up listening to my parents playing this, numerous times, every Christmas season. I now play this, myself, every year at our house, sometimes with the entire family and sometimes by myself. But I never miss listening to this brilliant mix of the story from Luke and the beautiful music of Fred Waring. It's not an easy find, although I recently saw it offered for sale on Amazon, but I strongly recommend this recording as a great message of the true meaning of Christmas.
In closing, as arguably the most popular Bible verse, John 3:16, reads; For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. We honor Christmas day, as that very day when God first "gave" his son Jesus Christ, to us, to save our lives. God gave us the very first…and the very best…Christmas present of all!!!
Merry Christmas to You All – We send our Love to All of You, in the season when God sent his son for All of Us!!!