CHRISTMAS: FAITH OR FANFARE?
Christmas: Faith or Fanfare?
“It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” Ain’t that right? Who doesn’t like Christmas? It’s the day many of us look forward to. From the trees, stockings, presents, snow, music, carols, Santa, family, friends, food, time off from work, what’s not to love about Christmas?
In the midst of the fanfare and festivities, the date set apart to celebrate an important landmark in the Christian faith lost its true essence. The flesh has been fed so much it stifles the spirit. Non-Christians may not know any better and that’s understandable but for Christians, we ought to know better.
The 25th of December was first made a holiday in the early Roman Empire however it was not the Christmas as we know it today. Originally, that day was for a pagan holiday called Saturnalia which was set apart to celebrate the god ‘Saturn’. It was a time of festivities, drinking, dancing, and eating.
Contrary to popular belief, Jesus Christ was not born on December 25th. It was not until AD 375 that the Roman Empire began recognizing the 25th of December as the birth of Christ mostly in order to make Christianity more palatable and compatible with pagan traditions.
The point is not to argue about what the correct date of Jesus’s birthday really was. This information is not of extreme importance. What is important is the reason for the day, which is to honor our savior. Instead of honoring Jesus many Christians have, perhaps inadvertently, replaced Jesus with another god. Maybe not Saturn or the ‘Unconquered Sun’ but with ourselves. We have become the center of the celebration caring only about our desires and our enjoyment. We have turned a day to celebrate Jesus into one for feeding our flesh. This is not to say that some time off to enjoy your friends and family with some food, music, and Christmas spirits are sins, but if we get so lost in them that we forget the true essence of the celebration then yes, it can become a sin for us.
So What Should We Do For Christmas?
First things first, it is important to recognize the reason for the day; that we are honoring and remembering the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ who is the reason we have life, hope, and an eternal inheritance. Think of it this way, when you celebrate someone else’s birthday, its all about them for the day. You spend time with them, get them gifts, and make them feel special. Just imagine how you’d feel if someone came and stole the spotlight from you on your own birthday! That would be annoying, wouldn’t it? Well, Jesus too has feelings so It shouldn’t be any different with him. We should spend even more time than we would on a regular day, get him gifts, or even throw him a party. You may ask how?
Help The Less Fortunate- Matthew 25:40 answers it perfectly when Jesus says, “Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers that you do unto me, when I was hungry you gave me to eat.” Make effort to reach out a hand to the ‘least’ of the brethren and in that, you’ll be reaching out to Jesus.
Keep His Commandments- In John 14:15 Jesus also says if you love me you will keep my commandments. Express your love for Jesus by reassessing and structuring out new ways to do honor God with your lifestyle, especially in those areas that you haven’t been exactly “hitting the mark” in all throughout the year. Reconcile with that family member or friend you have not been on good terms with even if you think they’re the one that’s wrong. Choose to stop that bad habit that you know is no good for you and is disappointing God. Choose to walk in upright standing before God in all your ways.
Give Him A Gift from the Heart- A gift to God can come in many forms and there is no right or wrong idea for a gift. It could be anything from an offering of praise and worship or maybe even a financial gift. Whatever you choose to give him, just let it be from the heart.
Let’s make Christmas more about Jesus and less about ourselves. While you’re hanging up your trees, decorating your houses and getting the presents, don’t forget to do a little something for him too. It’s his birthday after all!
Merry Christmas Everyone!
Staff Writer at Christian En Vogue
Ize Anumah is a twenty year old medical student from Nigeria. She loves to write and she cannot think of a better person to write about than Jesus! She is passionate about encouraging young women because she truly believes that a woman in Christ can change the world!
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