Part 2: White Christmas

Introduction:
The classic Christmas carols like White Christmas always make the Christmas atmosphere so much more animated, happy, and carefree. People are merry and bright and their jovial conversations are a stark contrast to the people who don’t feel particularly merry and bright. Carols proclaim, “Joy to the World” and that, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year / With the kids jingle belling / And everyone telling you ‘Be of good cheer.’” But what if inside we just don’t feel like “It’s the hap-happiest season of all.” The weeks of December that for some people legitimately are “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” are for others a bittersweet time, tinged with grief, anger, resentment, regret, depression, isolation, or a death of someone close, maybe the loss of a job, or maybe a broken relationship. Jesus knows the darkness we may walk in, and he can make your Christmas whiter than ever because He is the light shining in the darkness.

Something To Talk About:
We are asked to share that light with others this Christmas. Let me share how to go about doing just that based on the parable of the Good Samaritan. Christmas is a truly special time for people in need. People are without food, beds and basic necessities.Before we can meet any needs we must see the needs. Open your eyes and see people as God sees people. Secondly, have empathy for what people are going through. Don’t look away, but rather look with a heart that cares. Third, seize the moment. Our desire is to help you seize the Christmas moments and opportunities that God presents you. These opportunities will be open only for a short time, so use them to help people see Jesus. And lastly, do whatever it takes. This does not mean preaching or lecturing people. It means getting involved in their lives. And once you are involved take action, whether that means investing some time, some money, some love or some experiences.

Questions:
1. Is the Good Samaritan another way of showing how Jesus loved? Is it an example of how we should love at Christmas?
2. What do you view as your responsibility as a Christian is to others? What lessons did you learn from this parable?
3. How can we all express more compassion and care for one another?
4. Why is it important for us to be willing to help others?
5. God calls us to put His work first. Busyness can distract us from the good God calls us to do. Pray that we will see the needs of others, emphasize with them, and we will both seize the moments and take action on the opportunities God presents us this week.

Take One Thing Home With You:
Throughout Jesus’ earthly ministry we see time and time again how He blessed people around Him and how He served them. Jesus didn’t just talk about doing things for other people, He did them. We see Jesus feeding the hungry, healing the sick, teaching people around Him and specifically investing in a group of people for the long term. Jesus spent 3 years serving others around Him, even washing the disciples feet. In these 3 years Jesus changed the world. We can be the hands and feet of Jesus this Christmas season in showing someone the love of God. There are so many places to get involved as an individual or as a group. If you want to see what the hands and feet of Jesus look like, you need to get involved.