“Christmas has lost its meaning for us because we have lost the spirit of expectancy. We cannot prepare for an observance. We must prepare for an experience.” – Handel H. Brown.
The Christmas season is all about preparation, but it is also a time of thankfulness and wrapping up the year. The Christmas season brings a heightened feeling that something extraordinary is coming or something special is about to happen while celebrating the miracle and mystery of Jesus’ birth. Every year, we look to find true enjoyment in the Christmas season and to soak up this magical time with family, friends, and neighbors as we celebrate and to thank God for giving us the greatest gift ever: His only Son, Jesus. Unlike regular days, the anticipation builds up as we psych ourselves up to make this the best Christmas ever.
Like a child on Christmas Eve caught between the joyful memories of the Christmas that was while waiting with breathless anticipation for the Christmas about to be. It is a time for making room and priming our hearts to treasure Christ. And yet, we know all too well what it is like for December to blur by and to arrive on the doorstep of another new year. This is the time to reflect on how the birth of Jesus shook the world. God came to us. The Creator entered His creation. The Infinite became an infant. The Giver became the gift.
If you are familiar with the Christmas story, you know there was no room in the inn for Joseph and Mary when it was time for Mary to give birth. Instead of a cozy room, Mary had Jesus in a stable. While there was no physical room for Jesus that Christmas, we can give Christ spiritual room this Christmas. The famous Christmas hymn “Joy to the Word” includes the lyric: “Let every heart prepare Him room.” Hopefully, we don’t just gloss over those words.
This Christmas season, make it a priority to prepare room for Christ. One of the most significant ways we can prepare room is by keeping the purpose of Christmas central. When we keep the purpose of Christmas central, we approach Christmas with a worshipful mindset. We view Christmas as ultimately not a time to receive gifts but to extend worship and praise to our King born in Bethlehem. And as we keep the purpose of Christmas central, we embark on the season with joy.
Don’t let the commercial craze that can accompany Christmas keep you from focusing on Jesus and spending time with Him. Rather use this time to draw close to Him.
Amongst the hustle and bustle the holiday season often brings, we can forget to focus on our relationship with Christ. When we fill up our time during the holidays with holiday-related events and activities, we can essentially fail to prepare Him room. Maybe all God wants for Christmas this year… is you. Just you.
- What can we do to prepare for Christmas this year?