Christmas

I have spent a long time with the Christmas battle going on in my head…. “Jesus wasn’t really born in December, that holiday was hacked from the solstice observers… His name is Yeshua, not Jesus… all our symbols are lifted off of other religions… but it’s so beautiful.  The gifts, the lights, the song, the worship.  And family.  And tradition.  And…”

As I said, it’s a war.   Or, it was.

Tonight, God won.

Galatians 5:22-23  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.

It’s the Saturday before Christmas.  I went to church.  It was our pre-Christmas service.  (We have another on Christmas Eve, but it’s shorter).  An hour and a half of worship – which is a LONG time to sing and listen to people singing.  But… it was BEAUTIFUL.

And I’m sitting there nearly in tears thinking about all the people who were given gifts by their Creator – to sing, to play an instrument, to set up sound, to do special effects, to paint, to preach… and all those people gave their very best *back to God*.   We’re humans, we’re created, we can’t give something not given to us in the first place.  But we can give it back.  We can share.  We can share joy.

And joy has been shared.

And the fruit of the Holy Spirit is LOVE and JOY and PEACE and… that is what was going down in my church tonight.

I still think it’s important to get it right.  And when we can get it right, when they finally figure out when our Savior was born… then we can move the whole shebang.

And until then, I am sharing in the joy given to me by my Savior, my Lord, my Beloved.  I’m sharing that joy with my family, the family of Christ.   it is GOOD thing, Christmas is.  It is a GOOD thing.

The war is over.  The Lord has come!  Let earth sing and rejoice because of her King.   It matters that we rejoice.  It MATTERS that we rejoice.  My family helps me rejoice, so I will rejoice with them.

May you be filled with joy, because we have a Savior, and He gave Himself for you.

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7 thoughts on “Christmas

  1. Heather

    Hearthie,

    This is such a touchy subject for many believers. And I love your revelation regarding peace!
    Several years ago, I came across some pretty hostile stuff regarding Christmas, and it messed me up for a while, so I can relate to your struggle.
    We’ve backed way off on home decorations, over-the-top gift giving and excessive feasting. But it had little to do with the claims of paganism and everything to do with the double-minded way we were going about the celebration in our own modern era. Jesus got a quick nod while we raced hectically about trying to fit in as much materialism as we felt was reasonable for professing Christians.

    We do continue to sing the songs, take time to examine the Nativity story and make goodies to share with others (and gifts, if we know of something that is needed or would be especially appreciated). And, we make a yearly tour of the area Christmas light displays.

    The peace we’ve found is in realizing that it is never a time to NOT celebrate Christ’s incarnation. His birth is a legitimate part of that package and, although the winter solstice has been historically associated with pagan rituals, a late-December celebration of the birth of our Lord can indeed be a powerful reminder that Christ is the true Light which shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. John 1:5 ESV.
    From His most humble appearance, Jesus has continued to bring light to our world through the ones He has chosen to represent Him until His return. The light has spread across the globe and the gates of Hell will not prevail. It’s only my opinion, but the symbolism of remembering the appearance of God’s gift of light and life to even us Gentiles during the “deadest” day of the year is profound in it’s own right.

    That said, how, or even whether, to celebrate Christmas is most definitely a matter of conscience before the Lord.

    Reply
    1. hearthie Post author

      I agree. “matter of conscience”

      For me, I was double-minded. My joy had been stolen. And it has been given back. And I rejoice.

      I read a sign on pinterest the other day – “We are to be like Christ, not like other Christians”. YES.

      So your quiet celebrations draw me. My friends who celebrate Hannukah because they’re Messianic, they draw me. And some day maybe …

      In the meantime, depriving myself of joy by dwelling on all the “buts” deprives me of an opportunity to participate whole-heartedly, worship whole-heartedly, celebrate His birth… and those are good things.

      And the family, the gifts, the beauty of the “regular” version of the season – they’re good things too. NOT God things. But they’re good. And all good things are from God.

      And all things from God are to be enjoyed.

      Reply
  2. Ouida Gabriel

    I think all of us who truly desiring God’s will in our lives struggle with Christmas at one point. And we should rejoice in the struggle because to me, that is the mark that I desire His will above my own. It is the mark that I’m not searching for what makes me feel good or be happy but what He wants from me. And I rejoice in that greatly. Every struggle I have had, when all is said and done, shows me the woman God wants me to be. Sometimes the struggle is intense, some are just a flash in our minds, but all of them drawn us closer to His will if we let them.

    I agree Hearth. Peace, Joy, Rejoicing! On these things we are to look upon. It brings God pleasure.

    Reply
  3. Object of Contempt

    This is an issue I have wrestled with for years. It has been complicated by the expectations of extended family, some of whom are contemptuous of my faith. About three or four years ago we stopped observing Christmas. The family turmoil had made it impossible (for me) to celebrate even before that.

    I don’t pressure others to stop observing Christmas; and I do enjoy and appreciate the hymns and carols, etc. at church. There are a couple of reasons I won’t go any further than that in my celebration, though. They aren’t particularly about the holiday.

    I have always, since I was a teen long ago, felt a mixture of frustration and sadness whenever I would read about the /good/ kings in Judah. As the scripture summarizes the lives of these men it often says that they walked in the ways of their father, David, but they didn’t cut down the asherah poles. I guess those kings didn’t see them as a big deal… I mean, they didn’t actually /use/ them, and that was the important thing, right? I think we gravitate to thinking this way … We think that we got the /main thing/ right, and the rest won’t matter to God at all because it’s under the blood. And yet, we know that God cares about salvation /and/ sanctification. I don’t want to ignore the ‘asherah poles’, and I want to teach my family to seek those things out and ‘cut them down’. It isn’t legalism (as I’ve been accused of) but a desire to be whole-hearted, complete in my devotion. I want my kids to see me leaving behind ‘something fun’ for God’s sake, and know that He is completely worth it.

    I could write a lot more but this is getting long, and I’m using a soft-keyboard… blech.

    Reply
    1. hearthie Post author

      Welcome!

      Lovely comment. I’m going to have to chew on it a while.

      I particularly like the part about “a desire to be whole-hearted, complete in my devotion”.

      I think (hope) that’s what we’re all striving for.

      Reply

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