December 8, 2017
For a middle-aged man, I possess an excellent long term memory. I might not remember where I put my keys this morning, but I can recall with vivid clarity Christmas Eve, when I was just three years old, tearing the wrapping paper off a box that was bigger than me to reveal the Fisher Price “Little People” Airport. To this day I remember that magical moment down to the smells and feels. I also remember knowing, even at that tender age (and as one who had already wholly subscribed to the tradition of gift receiving) that Christmas was really about the birth of Jesus.
Decades later I find myself battling to keep at the forefront what I knew then deep down in my little heart: that the greatest present of all is Christ. It’s as if the busyness, buying, giving, and getting of the Christmas season conspire to drown out that particular truth. Perhaps they do. Yet, on Christmas morning I want to remember and cherish that Christ is God’s ultimate gift to his people and creation. More than that, I want my children to remember the magnificence of what God has done. “To us a son is given...and he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6). How much more will we savor the time spent with family, the eating, and the giving (and receiving) when our hearts hold fast to the gift of a Savior? “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11, ESV).
This Christmas morning, my family will bask in the goodness of God’s great gift by sharing a simple devotion. I might not make the children wait to open gifts, but at some appropriate moment, I will gently draw-in everyone’s attention and share a brief reflection. If you would like to do something similar, consider one of the suggested Today devotions below. Each reflection, grounded in scripture, lifts up the gift of Christ and calls us to respond with thanksgiving and prayer.
In whatever way you choose to celebrate the coming of our Savior, may you and your family have a truly memorable Christmas.
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