How are you going to unwrap Christmas this year? As we approach the season, there are many discussions, arguments even, regarding this present Christmas celebration. Many people are concerned that their Christmas is going to be different this year.
A Different Christmas?
This is mainly because of the COVID19 virus, and the restrictions that are being implemented on travel and socialising. Sometimes we can be concerned, and feel that way, because we are viewing ‘the difference’ as being solely negative. Some people are angry at restrictions being imposed on them. Some are feeling sad at what they think will be lost, compared to previous experiences that they have treasured and loved.
It is true that for many people Christmas will be different this year. But maybe we are being given time to reflect over the choices that we make. Time to reassess what we value and what is really important to us!
Christmas Past, Present, and Future!
Often it can be good to reminisce and reflect on happy memories. To look back at time spent with family and friends, but we don’t stay there. We allow God to work and reveal His goodness to us in the present.
For those of us who see the Christmas story as a beginning, and not an end, who see through the manger to the cross, we celebrate the Saviour of the World today and every day! Jesus is a living reality in our every day. We walk and talk with Him on our journey through life. He is our constant companion and guide. Jesus is the ‘unseen guest’ at every meal and every celebration.
We rejoice in God’s love and faithfulness to us, in the past, present and future! To remember God’s faithfulness in the past, builds us up, enabling us to see His goodness today. Remembering what He has done, and seeing what He is doing now, brings an assurance that we can look ahead with confidence to the future.
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Rejoice in the Present
Don’t live bemoaning the past, or longing for a different future, and then miss out on what God is speaking to you today! Jesus is our joy in this present moment. May we all be blessed, in our different Christmas’ this year, by being able to see the goodness of God in this present moment – for He is there with us!
Let’s be intentional that if our Christmas celebration is different, we are going to see and celebrate God’s goodness in the difference! We can choose to celebrate the present reality of our relationship with God – the heart of the Christmas message – Immanuel, ‘God with Us.’
“Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things;
his right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him.
The Lord has made his salvation known and revealed his righteousness to the nations.
He has remembered his love and his faithfulness to Israel;
all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth,
burst into jubilant song with music;
make music to the Lord with the harp,
with the harp and sound of singing,
with trumpets and the blast of the ram’s horn
–shout for joy before the Lord, the King.”Psalm 98:1-6
Put on a new Christmas song, and join in singing, play it again and again, until it becomes a new favourite. Rejoice, in this present moment!
All the World Awaits – Chris Tomlin