I absolutely love Christmas. The snow, the lights, the fireplaces roaring, the candles burning with a cinnamon scent, cookies everywhere…just the coziness of it all! But with all the hustle and bustle – Christmas parties, gift shopping, family outings, etc.,- we can get distracted by all the “flashy things” and forget what Christmas is all about. To celebrate Christmas the proper way – let’s put CHRIST back into Christmas!
So, how do we keep our focus? How do we put Christ back into Christmas and keep Him there? There are ways to redirect our focus and do it often so we don’t fall trap to the commercialism of our Savior’s birth celebration. Here are a few ideas to get your started – and a fun Christmas Challenge of sorts!
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PUT CHRIST BACK INTO CHRISTMAS – WHAT DOES CHRISTMAS REALLY MEAN?
The big question – what does Christmas really mean? Well, if you look up the actual definition of Christmas here is what you will find: “a Christian feast on December 25 or among some Eastern Orthodox Christians on January 7 that commemorates the birth of Christ and is usually observed as a legal holiday”. The literal meaning is Christ’s Mass. Mass meaning a celebration coming from the word Eucharist – which is a spiritual communion with God. Putting it all together – Christmas is a time to come together and celebrate Christ and give glory and praise to God through that celebration.
PUT CHRIST BACK INTO CHRISTMAS – THE MEANING OF CHRISTMAS IN THE BIBLE
The bigger question – what does the bible say about Christmas? This is a question we should all be asking and coming back to. We can easily get tangled up in all the “hoopla” and our minds begin to make a path of their own. We make this sacred holiday about money, gifts, decorations, etc. and push Jesus to second or third place. Now, don’t get me wrong – I love all the magic and wonder of Christmas. But here’s what I want us to think about: Why do we even get to celebrate this magical holiday in the first place?
What is the purpose in our celebrating? –
We, as Christians, celebrate Christmas as a way to acknowledge and give glory to God for sending His son to earth to save us. Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Jesus. “Today in the town of David a savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord”. Luke 2:11 I will direct you to read Isaiah 50-53 in its entirety to really get a glimpse of why the birth of Jesus is so important. For now, here is a glimpse: Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; And the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all – Isaiah 53:4-6.
FINDING THE TRUE MEANING OF CHRISTMAS
Ok – we know the literal meaning of Christmas and what the bible has to say about Christmas – third question is this: What is Christmas all about? This is where I put the ball in your court, friend. With the knowledge you have now from above and from digging deeper into God’s word, what is Christmas all about to you?
Let’s do a little activity –
I want you to grab a piece of paper and writing utensil. Write down all of your favorite Christmas traditions that you would like to do or currently to every year. Once you have your list ask yourself this question: What do these traditions say about Christmas? Let me give you an example: our family enjoys cutting down a fresh tree every year. Sometimes we pick a dead tree, a bare tree, or the ugliest tree we can find. To us this says Christmas is about welcoming even the most unwanted into our home and our lives. It’s about loving the unlovable and caring for the overlooked. Jesus was the overlooked. He was unwanted. This tradition provides opportunity!
HOW YOU CAN PUT CHRIST BACK INTO CHRISTMAS
When we have these types of opportunities through our traditions (by making the list and looking at it thoughtfully) we can put Christ back into Christmas instantly! Always bring it back to Jesus, sister. When you are hanging decorations sing hymns. When you are making cocoa think of the candy cane story.
My most favorite traditions during the Christmas holiday to put Christ back into Christmas are these: an advent calendar, reading the real Christmas story on Christmas morning, and completing a Christmas devotional for the whole month of December. Some other things you can implement to help put Christ back into Christmas are Christmas prayers, Christmas Devotionals, and understanding how Advent and Christmas tie together.
Christmas Prayers –
When giving gifts, write a prayer on a small note card and use that as the “To and From” tag. Challenge yourself to pray every day for the true meaning of Christmas to fill everyone’s heart. Pray for a certain person in your life every day and write it down in a journal. Give it to them as a gift for Christmas.
Christmas Devotionals –
There are all sorts of Christmas devotionals floating around out there. I like to use one’s that follow the Christmas story but dig a little deeper into the true meaning of Christmas. Here’s one that I love! And here is a great one for those busy momma’s out there who need a little peace this Christmas! Or this one that is great for the whole family devotional!
Advent Calendars –
Get yourself or your family an advent calendar (the one’s with chocolates are my favorites;)…here’s the one we get! I like how each window not only has a chocolate but also has a verse to tell the nativity story as you open each day. You could have one that you put your own candy in. This one is a decoration that lights up and can be reused from year to year. I really like this one! You can put it on the tree, hang it in a doorway, over the fireplace, wherever! And you can put whatever you want in the little baggies to keep it a surprise! This one would be super fun for toddlers! They get to learn numbers by grabbing the ornament out of the correct date and putting it on the tree each day!
PUT CHRIST BACK INTO CHRISTMAS – 25 DAY CHALLENGE
I feel like we are on the right track for the most wonderful Christmas yet, don’t you?! When we put Christ back into Christmas it leaves our hearts full and our souls fulfilled. We leave a legacy that is worth remembering. But we aren’t done yet!
I challenge you to 25 days of reading all about the true meaning of Christmas and how to KEEP Christ in Christmas this year! Below I have listed 25 different blog posts from some of my writer friends revolving around Christmas and it’s true meaning. Read one each day starting on December 1st. There are some great Christmas prayers here, devotionals, crafts and activities, and so much more! Bookmark this page in your browser so you have it for later!
And, if I don’t talk to you before then – Merry CHRISTmas – friends!
- 35 Bible Verses About Christmas
- Jesus is the Reason
- God’s Greatest Christmas Gift
- Slowing Down and Enjoying the Holidays
- 7-Bible Verses to Reflect on this Christmas
- The Significant Gift
- The Simple Meaning of Christmas
- Reason for the Season
- The Symbols of Christmas – The Evergreen Tree
- Keeping it Simple this Christmas
- Make Some Room for Jesus
- Jesus is our Prince of Peace
- Best Kids Christmas Stories that Inspire Faith
- Love Came Down at Christmas
- Light and Truth
- Light and Joy
- History of the Magi
- Heart of the Magi
- How to go from Ordinary to Extraordinary: The Story of Christmas and Love
- Retelling Fairy Tales: Once Upon a Christmas
- The Joy of Christmas – Bible Study
- How to Savor Christ this Christmas Season
- 35 Ways to Emphasize Christ this Christmas
- 8 Simple Ways for Kids to Keep Christ in Christmas
- Our Favorite Ways for a Christ Centered Christmas
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