“Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.” – 1 Chronicles 16:10
When should Christmas decorations be put up?
Before Thanksgiving? After Thanksgiving? Wait until December? It’s an annual debate that’s never goes away.
Here’s a solution: Whenever the spirit moves you, because Christmas is ultimately about the Holy Spirit. Christmas celebrates God’s incalculable generosity of giving the world his only son, Jesus Christ, who sacrificed himself so that the rest of us would be saved.
There. Case solved.
A very merry Christmas to all of you … and we heartily mean “Merry Christmas,” not some alternative milquetoast, watered-down holiday greeting!
Jesus is our Lord and Savior, plain and simple! Despite what the mass media and its insatiable consumerism tells you, Christ is at the center of Christmas, just as He is at the center of our lives. There’s no Christmas without Christ!
Like it or not (and we do), the first six letters of “Christmas” will always be C-H-R-I-S-T! And we will always celebrate Christ’s birth as the most important part of Christmas. Even the secular progressives can’t stamp out a holiday that goes back centuries … not that they won’t stop trying.
“A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other.” – 1 Corinthians 12
Is your shopping done? Have you even started? No matter where you are in the process, here’s a gift idea you might not have considered.
The apostle Paul writes of the spiritual gift we’re all given. So how about passing on that invaluable gift, by giving others the gift of Christ? It’s the best possible gift in the world … and one guaranteed NOT to be returned.
The gift of Christ offers hope in a time that desperately needs it. It revives people’s souls, even after they’ve been beaten down by a world seemingly determined to marginalize them. Think about having your own Lazarus moment with someone – how great would that feel?
Oh sure, a sweater is a nice Christmas gift, but it can be destroyed by one of nature’s most menial creatures: a moth.
The Bible warns of moths, by the way. James 5:2 admonishes that “Your wealth is rotting away, and your fine clothes are moth-eaten rags.” Take Jesus’s advice in Matthew 6:20, where he instructs to “Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal.”
Do you really want to give people the same old, same old for Christmas? Hopefully not, after the year we’ve had! We’re all waiting for something that improves our well-being and sense of humor.
Think about all that Christ has done in your life. What could he do for others? Don’t you want to give them this opportunity?
“Declare your glory among the nations, His marvelous works among all the peoples!” – Psalm 96
We are commanded to spread God’s love, both to fellow Christians and our secular brethren. In the second chapter of his first letter, the apostle John says “Those who obey God’s word truly show how completely they love him. That is how we know we are living in him.” James 1:22 warns “But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise you are only fooling yourselves.”
So how does this play out? How can you give others the gift of Christ? Start by considering all the events to which you invite others. Golf? Dinner? Play dates for the kids?
OK. Now, think about where you spend Sunday mornings. Why not invite these same people to join you in church? Or at a Bible study? Or maybe a group like C Suite for Christ … what are the odds?
“The farmer plants seed by taking God’s word to others.” – Mark 4:14
Want a more subtle approach, yet one that will be noticed? How you speak to others – literally, the language you use – can plant seeds. Try using Biblical language in everyday conversation. It has plenty of synonyms for our common verbiage. Try these examples, and see how easy it is:
- In your next e-mail, instead of writing you “hope” someone is well, mention you “pray” they’re well instead.
- In everyday speech, rather than citing how “lucky” or “fortunate” you are, note how you’re “blessed.”
- When an opportunity arises to agree with someone, respond with “amen” or, to really make a point, “hallelujah!”
Not so hard, right? Speaking of speaking, many of you probably use social media. How about sharing your faith on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or another preferred platform?
You don’t have to bombard people, or be in their faces. Just share one post a week that reflects your Christian beliefs. Not too difficult, right? Sure, you might get a nasty remark or two in return. Turn the other cheek, as Jesus told us to do. We build God’s kingdom by demonstrating his love, not battling social media trolls.
You might be seeing a big picture here. Giving the gift of Christ is about actively, unapologetically sharing our faith. Don’t hide yours under a hat. Be ready to tell others why you’re a person of faith, and how you’ve seen God at work in your life.
“Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” – Matthew 5
Glorifying our father in heaven – doesn’t this sound like something you not only know you should do, but truly want to do? The best way is by being an active disciple of Christ, which means seeking out opportunities to open others’ eyes to the wonderment, and majesty, and ultimately soul-filling salvation that comes from embracing Jesus, and holding him tight every day.
We’ve all had a rough year, and now we’re upon one of its biggest holidays, one whose first six letters just happen to spell out “Christ.” Let this be a final encouragement to give others the gift of Christ this Christmas … and to make 2021 a far better year by continuing to bestow this gift, even after Christmas is long in the rear-view mirror.
(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Participate in a virtual prayer session to ask God to be with those who have submitted requests. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected].)