Today is the second day of the Christmas Season....joy, gratitude and contentment are the words of the day. God has been hammering away at our hearts on how truly blessed we are and how ungrateful we as Americans have become.
For many years, we have been able to acheive a cheap (really expensive, in some cases) immitation of Christmas. We have been able to afford the 'finer things of life' and replace the joy and contentment that comes with a real relationship with Christ with 'stuff'. Gifts, events and all the busy-ness has become a poor substitute for the real joy and gifts which are family, friends and the memories we make with them. We have done this for so long, that it is hard to remember what this season is supposed to be about. But with the financial downturn, we are now forced to take a good hard look at what is real and what is artificial about our Christmas celebrations. And that is a good thing. We have so much to be thankful for...and its not the stuff. We have freedom in Christ, we have friends and family that love us unconditionally, and food, shelter, air, and on we could go. So how can we close "pandoras box" and reverse this tide now that it has run rampant for so long?
Repentance is an outdated word, but it is what we need. Literally, it means "turn around and go the other direction". I know it is difficult to turn the ship around, but it is so worth it. So it is time to refocus. We have been using the wrong lens, and now we need to change it to the right one.
Col. 1:12 says: Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified you to share in the kingdom inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.
So be thankful for Christ. Be really thankful, by focusing on what is true, lovely, righteous and holy. Think about what really needs to be done, and what will make the most of this precious time with friends and family. Get the kids involved and thinking more about who they could bless, and why it is important. We decided to do a "Family Motto" for the season to help us remember what we are all about. We got the family involved, and tomorrow you will know what we came up with.
Until then, may you have joy in this day, and the season!