What if I asked you if you'd be interested in being "The Hands of Christ" this Christmas? What a gift to give Him on His birthday! It's safe to say He'd be happy and pleased with it.
God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, and because God was with him, he went around doing good and healing everyone who was oppressed by the devil. - Acts 10:38
Wow - it sounds to me like He did a lot of cool stuff for other people! Can you imagine that Jesus would be all about Himself on His birthday? No, me neither!
Of course we want our children to have wonderful Christmas mornings and presents under the tree - I'm not suggesting we all become heartless. I am suggesting, however, that we also teach our children that Christmas is not all about them.
There are a few ways to accomplish this task - and I'm sure there are other ways that I've not thought of. Here are some I can think of:
Volunteer your family to serve meals at a homeless shelter. There are people who do not have a warm fire and a Christmas tree this year. They are thankful for a warm meal. Nothing instills a sense of gratitude like helping someone less fortunate. There are organizations across the country that welcome help year around. I invite you to find one and get involved. Show your children how to have a selfless Christmas. You're never too young to learn a lesson in humility.
The doctrines and the line of conduct which I taught you--both what you heard and what you saw in me-- hold fast to them; and God who gives peace will be with you. - Philippians 4:9
There is a wonderful opportunity to make Christmas better for a child on the other side of the world through several different charity organizations. It's fun to shop for these little boys and girls together and imagine their joy at receiving a gift! It not only blesses the child but it blesses you as well.
And I'd like to talk just a little bit about birthday cake - well, actually, birthday candy canes! A lot of parents with diabetic children tell me that they would like to hang some candy canes on the tree, but it's just so overwhelmingly tempting for their children to grab them off the tree and eat them! I received the most wonderful idea not long ago for you! Instead of hanging the canes in the traditional way, why not hang them upside-down, like the letter "J" - and explain that you are decorating the tree to celebrate Jesus' birthday - and we don't eat them. The canes lose their appeal as candy and become the letter "J". This way we not only teach our children that they do not have to eat candy off the tree, but we make the candy canes "special" and teach them about Jesus and honor Him!
And finally, whether you are the most fantastic singer who ever graced the planet, or, like me, you can't carry a tune in a bucket - consider Christmas Caroling at a Nursing Home. If you're a part of a huge choir or can only get a few brave souls to weather the cold, please make the effort! This is something that means so much to so many people who don't get visitors on a regular basis. The love (and sometimes tears) in their eyes is evident. I believe this is something that Jesus would do on His birthday. He is THE Minister, THE example and He wants us to follow HIS example. You know, I read something very interesting the other day. It said, "Please be patient with me as I get older. I've never been this old before and I'll never be this young again!" We're all getting older if we live long enough - so have some compassion for those who are living their Golden Years in a Nursing Home. Their lives matter - they really do! Each one represents a soul that Christ died for.
Whether it's meeting the needs of people who are hungry, or visiting lonely folks who have no one, there are ways that we can be more like our Savior to honor HIM on HIS birthday! What better way to let our Lord know that we love Him! Can you imagine how happy that makes Him? I can't think of a Christian anywhere who does not want to please Christ! Happy Birthday, Jesus! We love YOU!
Listen with your heart to cute little 4 year-old Avery Winter singing, "Happy Birthday, Jesus!"