What Christmas Is All About
It is increasingly easy for us to forget what Christmas is all about; after all we are inundated with people’s perspectives. I have written in recent months about our founding fathers’ hope that we recognize the blessings the Lord has bestowed upon this nation and never forget that we need His divine providence throughout our land.
In “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” a show many of us watched as children, Charlie Brown asks, “Isn’t there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?” Linus answered Charlie Brown with an excellent explanation:
“And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and glory of the Lord shown round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, ‘Fear not: for, behold, I bring tidings of great joy, it shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; you shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, good will towards men.’”
Linus was quoting Luke 2:8-14, the essence of Christmas. In Matthew 2:11, Matthew gives an account of the actions of the wise men when they first encountered the Christ child:
“And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshiped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.” It is possible that this account led to the tradition of giving gifts at Christmas.
This season of gift giving has turned out to be the most profitable time of the year for retailers. Unfortunately, due to regulatory and tax burdens, many of the goods sold through retailers are manufactured in other countries. We have also discussed some of these issues in this newsletter.
This year as you struggle to find meaningful gifts for friends and loved ones, consider giving gifts that will benefit others in our communities. Buying local keeps our cash in our communities and creates jobs for our fellow citizens. Consider giving gift certificates for things such as haircuts, gym memberships, car washes, house cleaning, restaurants, computer tune-ups or auto tune-ups and oil changes. The purchase of locally-produced crafts and jewelry also helps keep our U.S. dollars at home and helps provide employment for those in our communities.
As you celebrate this Christmas, I hope that you will remember what Christmas is all about. Attend a church service in your community and enjoy the real celebration of Christmas. Take time to visit or call some friends or family members that you haven’t spoken to in a while and wish them a merry Christmas. Both you and they will receive a blessing from the act.
Finally, I know that times are tough now and many are stressed financially, physically and emotionally. We will make it through these challenging times and we will emerge stronger than ever.
I wish you and your family a very merry Christmas.