While walking in a shopping mall one day, I was truly impressed with the beautiful Christmas decorations. It was like a huge gift box with red wrappings and golden ribbon. Indeed Christmas is family happy holiday time. Everywhere we go, we are reminded to buy some presents for friends and needy people.
The word Christmas is actually two words, “Christ mass”. It’s been written as a single word since the fourteenth century. Because of this religious tone, some people prefer to water down its meaning and just call it Happy Holiday. But is Christmas more than all these?
Christmas is a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. There are many studies saying that Jesus could not possibly be born in December because that’s winter time and the weather would have been too cold for the shepherds to stay out in the field. Other popular customs also suggested that the Christmas time is originated and related to the pagan worship of winter solstice. In view of these, some Christians also boycott the celebration of Christmas.
Nevertheless, Christmas is really a time to remember that our Saviour was born in love and born to die for us. Because of this, it is worth celebrating.
Many times during Christmas we read passages like the shepherds, the angels or the wise men. But I think John 1 is also very appropriate because this is the passage that clearly tells the birth of Jesus. “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)
The Word refers to Jesus Christ. He came from heaven, down to earth, became as a human being and lived on earth like any Jewish man. He was willing to give up the heavenly realm to come down to us because of His love and obedience to the heavenly Father. If you think this is an easy task to do, just imagine this…..
Our family pet is a turtle and we name her Lady Green. She has been with us for many years. When she first came she was so tiny that she could fit in a paper cup, now she is bigger than my palm. If one day I need to save her and the only way is for me to change into a turtle like her (perhaps like ninja turtle?) and live in a tub, will I do that? I will definitely not. You see it is unimaginable. But our Lord Jesus Christ is willing to come down on earth for us. “The Word became flesh” is indeed His love for us, worthy of our celebration. This is truly Christmas.
Winnie Chan Lay Preacher of Wesley Methodist Church, Sibu