Yesterday was Thanksgiving and if you watch television or are on facebook, it seems that the world made today, “Black Friday” the object of everyone’s consciousness. I asked myself this question. Who is this promoted shopping day designed to help? The economy? The individual stores who seem to be in competition to outsell it’s competitors? Or is it really designed to help us, the consumers to save money and still make a nice Christmas for our loved ones? Whose bottom line will remain in the “black” this Christmas season? I don’t know about you, but even though we have not blessed with children, we often find ourselves “in the red” because we go overboard the last two weeks before Christmas.
I wrote an article and poem several years ago but it still seems appropriate today. Especially when we stop to realize that the very first Christmas gift was delivered without the beautiful and bright decorations we deck out homes in today. Please don’t misunderstand. I love Christmas and decorating. Having friends over on Christmas Eve following the Christmas program at Church is always a delight. I’m not the grinch who stole Christmas or even Scrooge. But I am thankful the Father gave His only begotten Son, the Light of the world, the Living Word, the Lamb of God who became the Good Shepherd, to earth as a baby in a lowly stable with only a bright star for decoration and the most wonderful cantata was sang to the world’s idea of the lowest men in their social realm – shepherds.
And so, my friends, I will share this written account of my frustration of trying to make Christmas so special for my guests that I almost forgot who the celebration was for. Our Lord Jesus Christ. After all, it is His birthday and He deserves all of our praise. Tonight I will post the prelude and tomorrow I will share the poem with you. Pray we will all have a “Mary” Christmas this year!
A “Mary” Christmas
By Katherine Purdy
November 12, 2003
“Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word. But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? Bid her therefore that she help me. And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou are careful and troubled about many things: But this one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part which shall not be taken away from her.”
How are we going to spend Christmas this year? Am I going to rush around trying to make everything look “perfect” and spend so much time buying “perfect” gifts for loved ones who already have everything they need anyway? Just like Martha?
This year, the Lord has impressed upon my heart to have a “Mary Christmas”. That is a season of worship for Him. Yes, I will put up the tree and have already started making gifts but this year my emphasis shall be upon Him! How shall I do that? First, I will make it a point to share the true meaning of Christmas to all that I can.
- When I go out to shop or to dine out, I’ll give out Christmas tracts with a small candy cane attached. This is a perfect conversation starter. What a perfect way to explain that
Though my sins were as scarlet, Jesus washed me white as snow! The shape of the candy looks like a shepherd’s crook. Jesus is the Good Shepherd who laid down his life for the sheep…. us! He is also the Lamb of God who took away the sins of the world. And certainly, most people remember the announcement to the shepherds about the Savior’s birth. They were the perfect people to share the Good News with; considering who He is! After the angels left, the shepherds sought and found Him and bowed down and worshiped Him. As should we!
- The way we decorate our tree can also be a witnessing tool. We can also praise Him as we remember that the evergreen tree reminds us of eternal life. The shape of the tree points to God. Of course, the tree must be in a stand to remain upright, as we need The Lord Jesus as our firm foundation.
The lights on the tree remind us that Jesus is the Light of the world. “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world; he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
The lights also remind us that we are to let Him shine through us ”Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
The lights also remind me that there will be no need of sun or moon in Heaven; for Jesus is the light. “And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it; and the Lamb is the light thereof.” (Revelation 21:23)
- Gold decorations & tinsel remind me of the streets of gold in Heaven. (Rev. 21:21)
- Red decorations remind us that Jesus was born to die. He shed His blood that we may be saved. He paid the penalty for my sin. (John 3:16)
- White on the tree reminds me that he washed me white as snow.
I could go on and on but I think you get the picture. Let us think of HIM this Christmas!And while we’re at it: Angels are not women wearing slinky dresses with beautiful long blonde tresses. They always appear as men. Not with wings or with halos. They are messengers of God. They are not to be worshiped, you know. They came to announce His birth and to Worship Him!