It's not about the lights, the decorations, the tree, or the presents.
I admit it!
As I get older, I do not buy into all the rush and hard work that this commercialized Christmas brings. Maybe I am just a tired crabby old man. I have been called that before.
Don't get me wrong, I love the get-togethers with family and friends, the joy and laughter of the children anticipating the presents they expect to get. Lights twinkle from house to house; decorated Christmas trees are everywhere you look. Presents crowd for space under the tree and families come together. Christmas is a wonderful time of the year.
But have we missed the true meaning?
What’s interesting is the etymology of the word Christmas. It literally means Christian Mass. It’s a shortened form of Christ’s Mass. For Christians, the true meaning of Christmas is the celebration of the Savior, Jesus Christ.
Christmas is a time of spiritual reflection on the important foundations of the Christian faith. It’s also a celebration. It’s when Christians celebrate God’s love for the world through the birth of the Christ child: Jesus. The Bible tells of his birth hundreds of years before, fulfilling prophecies.
Jesus was born to pay the price for the things we have done wrong: sin. God sent his only son to be the atonement for all our sins so that we would not be separated from God. Without Jesus, we would all die for our sins. We inherited our sinful nature from the first human beings God created, Adam and Eve. While being fully God and yet fully man, Jesus came into the world as an infant to save us all.
'The hinge of history swung on the door of a Bethlehem stable.'
Ralph W. Stockman
Most Christmas traditions vary in significance and symbolic meaning. For example, we exchange gifts because God sent us the most precious gift: his only Son. Also, three Wisemen visited Jesus and brought gifts as well. A poem titled A Visit from St. Nicholas penned in 1822 popularized the tradition of exchanging gifts too.
Although people worldwide celebrate Christ’s birth on December 25th, it was likely that he was born on a different month and date. The church in the 4th century chose December 25th as it coordinated with the Solstice on the Roman Calendar.
We know that through belief in Christ we are daughters and sons of God. Heaven will one day be our home. Perhaps this will help you look at the Christmas season differently this year. A chance to truly take in the wonder and awe of the season.
What is the true meaning of Christmas?
The true meaning of Christmas is love. John 3:16-17 says, "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. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him." The true meaning of Christmas is the celebration of this incredible act of love.
So love one another this Christmas season, be kind to one another, and remember God Loves You!