5 Meaningful Ways to Keep Christ at the Heart of Christmas
5 min read
The Christmas season is magical, somehow, even as public focus continues to shift away from its true meaning. Although nothing is wrong with enjoying the decorations, traditions, and fun Christmas music that are largely devoid of references to the holy birth, Jesus should take center stage in our hearts. If we are careful to “Keep ‘Christ’ in Christmas,” our worshipful attitudes will help spread the joyous Good News to those around us. Christians shine like the star over Bethlehem when we make Christmas about Christ, and here are five ways to do just that.
1- Set Up a Nativity Scene
If you have a front yard, that is an excellent place to display a nativity scene. As an alternative, you could get creative in proclaiming the true meaning of Christmas in your neighborhood. For example, setting up a large cross in front of a life-sized kneeling Santa Claus shares a profound message as well. Santa’s mission of giving, by the way, is an enchanted expression of how very much God loves all of us. That’s why He sent Jesus, His Son, from heaven to be born of a woman. Ultimately, that baby was sent to open a door for us to go to heaven, and He died on the cross in the process.
God’s redemption plan that began to unfold in a manger is also perfectly told when you set up a nativity scene in your home. If you find it difficult to safely keep all the wonderful nativity pieces in a prominent place, know that even a small nativity on the mantel will nicely display the real reason for the season. Just try not to let the story of the first Christmas get lost amidst other decorations.
2- Savor the Christmas Story
Throughout December, there are many ways to focus on the supernatural events that took place in Bethlehem over 2,000 years ago. Christian Advent calendars can be excellent because they sometimes include a scripture each day that details events surrounding the birth of Jesus. The Christmas story is found in Luke 1:26-56 and 2:1-20. Don’t wait until Christmas Eve to read it, though!
To keep Jesus at the heart of Christmas, it makes sense to give Him at least as much thought as we give our shopping lists. Create your own Christmas devotional individually or as a family by exploring the wonders of each element of the arrival of the promised Messiah. Go through the scriptures one day at a time throughout December, up to Christmas Day. Discussion and note ideas for Day 1 follow:
Focus on Luke 1:26-27 on the first day. In these scriptures, “The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin…”
What does this tell us about angels?
Imagine how carefully God chose the woman to give birth to His Son.
What type of person must Mary have been, to be the chosen one?
Do angel messengers visit us unseen, and what part do they play in directing our lives?
Come of up with some ways these things apply to our lives.
3- Send Christ-Focused Christmas Cards
A very natural and acceptable way to share a spiritual message is in the form of Christmas cards. You could send traditional Christian Christmas cards, or even a funny Christmas card and simply include a piece of scripture alongside a picture of your family. The Word of God is powerful and always bears fruit. You may inspire others to focus more on the first Christmas, when you send an inspirational card.
“For today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:11-New American Standard Bible (NASB)
4- Wear Christmas-y Christian Apparel
When you are out and about in December, wear Christian clothing with a Christmas message, such as “Oh, come let us adore Him.” Many fellow believers would be blessed if you wear a “Jesus is the Reason for the Season” Christian shirt. Amidst all of the commercialism, and the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season, it truly is beneficial to all to see a Christian message and be reminded of Jesus. The meaning of Christmas is all about the love of God for all of us. He gave the entire world hope, and people all around us desperately need this message. Why not wear Christian jewelry and various styles of Christian apparel to share the message about God’s gift of His Son and salvation?
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23-New American Standard Bible (NASB)
5- Give God a Meaningful Gift
With all the gift-giving that goes on at Christmas, God, sadly, has an empty stocking in most homes—or no stocking at all. A perfect way to keep Christ at the center of Christmas is to present him a gift that comes with sacrifice. This is to follow David’s example, when he said he was unwilling to offer God something that cost him nothing (2 Samuel 24:24a).
Consider establishing a new tradition in your family, or even by yourself. Hang a stocking for Jesus—whose birthday we are celebrating, after all. After discussing or contemplating the true Christmas story, challenge everyone to consider what type of gift they could symbolically give to God. Perhaps everyone could wrap a small gift that fits in God’s stocking, with a note inside naming what their gift is. Some ideas for a Christmas gift for God follow:
Forgive someone you know you’ve needed to forgive. Forgiving can be very difficult, but God says we must forgive or our sins aren’t forgiven. When you ask God to help you forgive, He will, even if it feels that you are just going through the motions. Stand on faith that God helps you forgive, and the reality of it will come, though it doesn’t mean you will necessarily forget harm that was done. Forgiving will bless God but will probably bless you even more.
Make a commitment to spend at least 10 minutes focused fully on Him every day—something we should all do, but it takes discipline to begin. The more time with God, the better, but 10 minutes is a great start.
Give up buying expensive coffee and restaurant lunches for at least a week, and send the money to a worthy charity, such as the Salvation Army, which helps people in need and shares the Gospel.
Have a Very Jesus Christmas!
The best Christmases are the ones that keep Jesus at the center of everything. How will you put Jesus first this season? Let us know in the comments below, or tag us on social media!
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