12/22/13

Joy of Christmas: Day Twenty-Two

Christmas is so much more than presents, trees, lights, and childhood.

We would all agree that Christmas is about Christ. Yet, we only focus our study on a small part of who Christ is during this Christmas season. We only talk about mangers, starts, angels, and a baby. He is so much more than that! We sing about and talk about the joy that comes with the Christmas story. But why is it so joyful that Christ was born?

Inspired by the
Jesse Tree Advent book**, I am going to do a 25-Day series focusing on
finding joy in Christ! Click here for more info.

Joy of Christmas: Day Twenty-Two

The Star

The wise men came from the East.  We do not know who they were.  They brought three gifts, so it is assumed that there were three, but there may have been more.  They were astronomers, astrologers, men of science.  Many believed that they were Persians.  Scholars also think that Daniel was also a Magi (wise man) - and these men were those that had studied Daniel's writings.  Their were costly and fit for a king.  More here and here.

We would learn from them.  We tell our children that we give presents for two reasons at Christmastime:  1.) God gave the greatest gift of all - His Son, Jesus. 2.) The wise men gave gifts to Mary and Joseph for the baby.  We must ask ourselves, what else can we give other than "things"?  In our materialistic world - we know nothing of truly giving.  We give money and toys.  We give gift cards and clothes.  What about things that cannot be seen?  Such as:
Time.
Love.
Joy.
Peace. 
Kindness.
Gentleness. 

I am convicted this Christmas that I only give my family tangible things: food, clothes, a clean house, toys.  What they truly need are the things unseen.  As Christians, we are told that it is the unseen things that are eternal.  What can I give that will last eternity?
I can give my time.  I can sit and play with my little ones, even as the dishes pile up in the sink.
I can give my love, even to those that have wronged me and hate me.
I can give joy to those that are sorrowing this Christmas season.
I can give peace, when all the world is insane.
I can give kindness, when evil is all that I see.
I can be gentle, instead of reacting in anger.

My joy will come when I give of myself.  The sacrifice of the heart brings true joy.