Christians often say, “He is the reason for the season,” which is true. Yet, it is easy in the “hustle and bustle” of the holidays for that not to ring true in our homes. So, here are some suggestions I have complied to help you keep Christ central this holiday season…
Give God a Gift
The notion of giving God a gift may sound funny since it is He that is the “giver of every good gift” (James 1:17 cf. 1 Cor. 4:7). Yet the Bible certainly gives us precedence for giving God gifts, from Abel offering gifts to God (Gen. 4:4) to Paul’s exhortation in Romans 12 for us to offer our bodies as living sacrifices in light of all His goodness to us.
So, this holiday season give the LORD a gift. No, He does not need it. But He does deserve it and it is thoroughly biblical. When we give gifts to God it gets our mind on God (Matt. 6:21). Here are a few ideas: Fast. Fast one of the holiday feasts. Not for the purpose of limiting your caloric intake but because you want to focus and intentionally praise the one who is “the reason for the season.” You could also give a financial gift to your church or other good ministry. Use your creativity and give a gift that you believe God would appreciate.
Read the Christmas Story on Christmas Day
Reading the Christmas story on Christmas is a super good thing to do if the whole season is supposed to be about the coming of the Messiah Jesus. I would personally chose Luke 1:5-2:20. I would also suggest singing a hymn and offering a prayer of thanks too.
Set up a Nativity Scene in your Home
This is a helpful visual representation of what the holiday season is really all about. The One who created the world—the One who was in the beginning with God—the One who made all things and holds all things together—He became flesh and dwelt among us. When we see the nativity scene we can rejoice that God waded into this broken world to redeem it.
Give someone who doesn’t deserve it a Gift
In this is love, the Bible says, not that we loved God but that He loved us and sent His son to be the wrath absorbing sacrifice for our sins (1 Jn. 4:10). The Bible says that while we were still sinners Christ died for us (Rom. 5:8). So, in giving a gift to someone “who doesn’t deserve it” we remember the undeserved gift that God has given us.
Set aside time to read the Bible
There are many good options for advent devotions. Pick one and read a portion at a time that’s convenient. It doesn’t have to be long. It’s probably best if it’s short. But setting aside intentional time to reflect on Jesus in Scripture during the holiday season will be very helpful in keeping Christ central this Christmas season.
Go to a Christmas Eve Church Service
It is always a blessing for my family and I to go to a Christmas Eve service. I encourage you to go to a service this year if that’s not something you normally do. It will help you keep Christ central this Christmas.
Send Christmas cards with a Spiritual Message
You don’t have to be pushy but if you are a Christian then “He is the reason for the season.” Let that be reflected in your Christmas cards. It can be subtle but I encourage you to think about it. If Jesus is, as the song says, the “hope of all the earth” and the “joy of every longing heart” then let’s have at least some of that truth reflected in our Christmas greeting cards.
Write a Christmas card to a Missionary
Perhaps relate in the note how thankful you are that as Jesus was sent by His Father and went to place that was not His home they too were sent by God their Father to a place that is not their original home (cf. Jn. 20:21). Let them know that when you think of Jesus’ incarnation you are thankful for their relocation to a land that was foreign to them.
Set aside some time by yourself to reflect on why you are thankful that Messiah Jesus Came
I encourage you to write your thoughts down. If you enjoy poetry, write a few lines that reflect your thoughts.