Can you believe that it is already the “most wonderful time of the year” again? I admit it is easy for anyone to fall into the materialistic aspects of the Christmas season – the music, the presents, the food, the beautiful decorations – and forget about the real reason for the season. This is a time meant for faith, family, and friends that has turned into sales, shopping, and stress. As Christians we have liberties, but we still should keep the main thing the main thing. As I have been pondering this all from the view of a father, husband, and youth leader I have come to the conclusion that Christmas and the Christmas season in one large way really is no different than any other day or month in the year. As followers of Christ we daily and moment by moment have distractions that can easily distract us from keeping our eyes on Christ. Christmas time has additional distractions sure, but just like the other 364 days of the year, we as Christians need to keep the main thing the main thing and keep our focus on our Jesus. If our life is lived from a posture of prayer, of looking to heaven, of walking with Christ and being led by the Holy Spirit, then Christmas should be no different. So how do we keep Christ in Christmas? The short answer is the same way you keep Christ in every other day and aspect of your life. You love Him supremely, you fellowship with Him daily, and you seek to glorify Him with your whole existence.

 It’s been said: “To catch the real meaning of the Spirit of Christmas, we need only drop the last syllable, and it becomes the Spirit of Christ.” The Spirit of Christ is to be humble, meek, faithful, forgiving, long-suffering, compassionate, loving, obedient to God the father, to be in awe of God the Creator, and to put the needs of others before your own. Do you live that way? Do you live that way daily? Then you already understand the Spirit of Christ! You already have the Spirit of Christmas!

Some practical ways to intentionally keep Christ in Christmas:
Devotionally read through the biblical account of the birth of Jesus (Luke 1:5-56 and 2:1-20).
Share the love of Christ and the hope of the Gospel with a world that is suffering, lost, and like you had been, so badly in need a Savior.
If you decorate your home, setup a nativity scene to remind you daily the reason for the season. Because our sin requires a perfect sacrifice before a holy and just God, our Heavenly Father sent His own Son to earth as a baby who grew into a man so that He could become that sacrifice (John 3:16). The child who was born to Mary and laid in a manger would one day grow up to die on a cross and rise again so each and every person who believes in Him may receive forgiveness for sin and eternity in heaven (1 Peter 1:3-4).

How will we worship Him this season? Endlessly shopping? Hustling about and adorning our homes? Will that be our tribute to our Savior? Or will we bring peace to troubled hearts, good will to those in need, glory to God in our willingness to serve Him? Jesus put it simply, “…come, and follow Me.” (Matthew 19:21)