Not-so-secret Santa.

I got my Secret Santa gift at work today.

secret santa

You know how it works. There is a dollar limit and everyone picks a name out of a hat.

You buy, then wrap, the gift.

But the person getting the gift does not know who is giving it.

The gift I received was great. There was a party game and a dozen A Christmas Story socks. Whoever gave the gift did a fantastic job. I loved it!


When living through Christmas every year, one is reminded about the greatest gift ever given.

A baby in a manger.

Have you received that gift? Even though there are billions of people in the world, that gift of salvation is still available.

Here’s the kicker: This gift comes from God, not a Secret Santa.

There are no surprises. No bad gifts. Nothing to return. No gift receipts needed.

We actually know what the gift is going to be before we receive it.

Our bibles tell us everything we need to know.

So as you are ripping apart wrapping paper and cutting through the ribbon on your presents, remember this:

Jesus is a gift that is already unwrapped and you have full access to Him.

opening a gift

This could be your best Christmas ever!

Merry Christmas!

 

 

If this tree could talk…

Christmas trees. if there is any one thing that symbolizes Christmas, it is a tree.

A small sampling from the internet reveals a plethora of styles and designs.

xmas tree 5xmas tree 4xmas tree 2xmas tree 6xmas tree 1

When did you put up your tree? Perhaps you cut down a live one.

Maybe the fake tree you have used has been in and out of your attic for 15 years.

Whatever the case, I think we can all agree that a tree is a symbol of the Christmas season.

Just for fun, here is my tree:

upside down tree

I pose this question to you:

If your tree could talk, what would it say? 

We take out our trees and decorate them every year. The lights go on first then the ornaments. And finally, the presents are placed underneath the tree.

If you were a Christmas tree, what would you say?

Would you be excited to be decorated?

Or would you be grumpy because you sat in storage for the last 10 months?

Are there family gatherings that you could talk about or do you stand alone in a dark corner of the room?

My purpose is not to condemn or condone the use of Christmas trees. I personally like to see trees all lit up and shining through a large picture window.

May this post be a reminder that Christmas is more than a tree. 

The trees that you see around at this time of year should serve as a reminder.

A reminder that Jesus was born in a manger and that is why we celebrate this event.

My motivation behind a “talking tree” post was two-fold.

  1. I fall into the trap of commercialism at Christmas time. You get so wrapped (no pun intended) up in giving gifts that it is really easy to forget the greatest Gift that has ever been given.
  2. If you have been distracted by all the lights and tinsel, let all that yule-tide bling point you to Jesus.

So as you gather around your tree in a few days, make time for a little baby in a manger.

Don’t worry, the gifts can wait.

Merry Christmas to all!

One Yard of Christmas, pt. 1

Happy New Year!

I usually look forward when starting a new year. But for this month, I am going to reflect not on 2015 but on Christmas. Yes, the modern season and commercialism of Christmas might be the Reason for Christmas is still real. Jesus, that helpless little baby born in a manger is still alive today! And because He still lives and reigns, the celebration must go on. So I now present to you One Yard of Christmas!

There are three feet in a yard. So it only stands to reason that in One Yard of Christmas, there are also three feet.

Here is the first one: a feat

 

Luke 2:6:7 says, “While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”

 

How is it that God, who happens to be completely powerful, was born completely helpless? At birth, that little baby was just like you and me. Totally helpless. It becomes even more staggering to think where He came from. The timeless words of John tell us “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son…” John 3:16a. What God did was a feat of great love.

 

Here is how Dictionary.com defines the word feat:

1. a noteworthy or extraordinary act or achievement, usually displaying boldness, skill, etc.:

For me, God giving His son is an amazing act. A feat that has never been duplicated in all of time. You can probably think of many great feats that have happened through history. But do they really compare to the Almighty God and Creator of the Universe wrapping Himself in skin and being born as a crying little baby?

 

But why does it matter? Let’s go back to John. He wrote the three little words that are so simple yet so impactful: “God so loved.”

 

So as we journey through this year, may we never forget that God so loved us. I mean me. I mean you. Anyone can experience this love. That is what is so noteworthy or extraordinary about Jesus. The love of God shown to us in and through the infant of Christmas.

 

This is all in vain unless there is application. Carve out some time today and everyday to ponder the love of God. Read His Word. Soak in it. Let it be the driving force for your life. Surrender to the waves of His unending, unrelenting love. His compassions are new every morning! See Lamentations. Let 2015 be a year in which you are changed. God’s love will do that…

but only if you let it.