Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

~ Written by Viki Rife

Wonder. I’ve heard that word throughout my entire life in reference to Christmas. I remember as a child seeing commercials showing delighted kids receiving just what they wanted, or being surprised with a superbly decorated tree, and the announcer saying something like, “give them the wonder of Christmas.”

Wonder is a very good word to use in reference to Christmas. But our world has stopped far short of the real wonder of Christmas. And we can miss it, too, as we rush around to make sure everything is just as perfect as what we see on TV or Pinterest.

The true wonder of Christmas is that no matter what my circumstances, I am deeply and truly loved. It is a wonder that the God of the Universe would look at me and say, “I want much more for you than what you deserve.” It is a wonder that God is so wise that He sent His Son as a baby, someone who had to endure everything we do from the start.

Just as we fit trimming our tree and shopping for presents into our schedule, let’s carve some time this season to sit and ponder the wonder of “Christ with us.” And let’s put as much thought and energy into sharing that wonder with the children in our lives as we do in giving them the world’s image of the wonder of Christmas.

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Yesterday my husband and I had lunch in the home of friends who are refugees from Nepal.  Odell has helped them in numerous ways as they have navigated the complexities of banking, finding jobs, learning to drive, and getting drivers’ licenses in America. Their most recent request was for a Christmas tree. So Odell found a pretty little Fraser fir, bought a stand, and took several extra strings of lights and gold balls from our collection and helped them set up their tree.

The grandmother is Hindu, but the mother and father came to faith in Christ in Nepal. There are also two children, a 5th grade girl and a 3rd grade boy. Unfortunately, since the parents’ work schedules don’t allow them to attend church, the children have little exposure to spiritual things. So we took them a gift: a special ornament for their tree, a stable with Mary, Joseph, and the baby in the manger. We showed the daughter where to find Luke 2 in their Bible, and read to them the story of Christ’s birth, explaining that this is the reason we celebrate Christmas.

This morning I spent longer than usual sitting in the glow of our own Christmas tree, reflecting on that miraculous birth 2000 years ago, and thanking God for His gift that brought salvation to all mankind. Such a great gift requires a response, and these words by Charles Wesley express it so beautifully:

Father, our hearts we lift,
Up to Thy gracious throne,
And bless Thee for the precious gift,
Of Thine incarnate Son;
The gift unspeakable,
We thankfully receive,
And to the world Thy goodness tell,
And to Thy glory live.

Jesus the holy Child,
Doth by His birth declare,
That God and men are reconciled,
And one in Him we are;
Salvation through His Name
To all mankind is giv’n,
And loud His infant cries proclaim
A peace ’twixt earth and Heav’n.

 O might they all receive,
The new-born Prince of Peace,
And meekly in His Spirit live,
And in His love increase!
Till He convey us home,
Cry every soul aloud,
“Come, Thou Desire of nations, come,
And take us up to God.”

Merry Christmas to you. I pray that the beauty and wonder of God’s gift of love will fill your hearts with great joy as you celebrate His coming.

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