It is the Christmas season. It is a time for happiness, giving, receiving and appreciating. There was a time not so very long ago when the main focus of the Christmas season was the birth of Jesus as the world’s Savior. We are past that now, thanks to our political correctness, and Jesus is very much an afterthought of the holidays. Well, here today Jesus is NOT an afterthought. He is NOT a divisive figure who offends people by his mere existence. No, here today Jesus is recognized as the Savior of humanity, the centerpiece of God’s plan and the King of Kings. As we honor the birth and life of Jesus today, we will do so by highlighting some personal conversations he had with various people he encountered throughout his three-and-a-half year ministry. In so doing, we will tell a story that is rarely told. Merry Christmas!
Christmas has come - the hustle and the bustle, the lights, the music, the trees, the ornaments and the garland. Christmas has come – Santa and reindeer and elves and Frosty and movies and presents and gift wrap and cards. Christmas has come – whether you feel you can say “Merry Christmas” or just “Happy Holidays,” we are wishing well to those around us, for it is the season of good cheer and smiles. Christmas has come – family and dinner and cakes and pies and cookies and giving and receiving and football and dressing in new clothes. Yes, Christmas has come. It has certainly made its indelible mark on us yet again…. You know Christ has come – the prophecies said that he would and God’s plan said it was time. Christ has come – he was born to live so that he could die and redeem all of humanity. Christ has come – his gift was simple, yet it was the greatest and most powerful gift that could ever, that would ever be given to this world. Christ has come – and as a result, all of the human race has the opportunity for eternal life. Christ has come – has he made his indelible mark on you?
So, Christmas day is here. Hopefully it is filled with family, joy and happiness! Hopefully it provides some time to sit back and reflect on the amazing opportunities we have for freedom. Honestly, sometimes we at CQ look at Christmas as a bittersweet holiday. While we enjoy the story of Santa and his elves and do appreciate the goodwill that does seem to surface at this time of year, we feel a sadness at the lack of attention paid to the real story of Christmas. It is really too bad we are so afraid to name the name of Jesus Christ at Christmas! Well, not today, not now! Stay with us as we stop everything else and honor the real story!
'Tis the season to be jolly! Christmas happened just a few days ago so we ask the question, what really happened? Did we have lots to eat – see lots of family and friends – give and receive lots of gifts? Did we smile and laugh and decorate? Did we watch Christmas specials and listen to all kinds of holiday music? I hope we did! I hope we took the time to reconnect with a spirit of love, life and giving. I hope we entered into the happiness that this season brings! Now the big question – how did we recognize the true reason for the season – how did we honor the life to change all lives? Well, if you are looking for more of that part of things, stick around – we have a story to tell!!!
Just think – in just a few days the anticipation will be over and we will get to finally open all those presents! We will finally get to see if we will get what we really wanted or if we end up with some lame gifts… Wait a minute! Has it really come down to THAT? Have we taken the value of the day on which the world acknowledges the birth of its savior and made that day so small as to be about ME? The good news is – there is still time! We can still find the real meaning! Stay with us…
Here we are just a few days before Christmas 2012. This is a time when there is usually a magic in the air, an excitement for friends, family and good cheer. Usually, that is the case – but not this year. No, not this year. Something happened, and as a result the giddy joy is gone. We have suffered a great loss. A few short days ago, an unimaginable crime was committed and 27 people, 20 of them 6-and 7-year old children, had their lives taken from them, brutally and without mercy. Today we honor their memory and recognize the pain of their grief-stricken families and friends. Today we also search to find how the hope of the true meaning of Christmas can give us – all of us - strength to cope, strength to stand, and strength to begin to move forward.
Christmas is here! It is the time for celebration and food and decoration and gifts and parties and time off from work and football and TV specials and Christmas songs and holiday cheer and holly and mistletoe and shopping and spending money and Santa Claus and elves and snow!!! Whew! By the way, if you can put all of that aside, it is really the time for deep heartfelt thankfulness, for it is the time that we give honor to the birth of the most important, most courageous, most loving, most wise and most humble man to have ever lived. The man Christ Jesus – our savior and Lord! Stay with us for a VERY SPECIAL two hours of praise and thanks!
Yesterday was Christmas – or for some it was a winter holiday that was all about some jolly old man from the North Pole bringing presents to all the kids. There were lights, decorations, trees, gifts, food, family, fun and football – and everyone presumably had a good time. The only thing missing? Jesus, the real reason for the season! He may have been out of the loop in a lot of places yesterday, but I can assure you, Jesus has been found and will be heard about for the next two hours! Stay with us as we look at and celebrate the Real Christmas - its drama, its inspiration and its hope. This morning we will present a six-chapter story to you about Jesus’ birth and the events that surrounded it.
Humans are emotional beings. As this is the case, we want things – we don’t just have an instinctual magnetism towards certain things, we truly desire them. The Tenth Commandment said, “Thou shalt not covet.” Does this mean that the seemingly inborn trait to desire is wrong – against God’s Law? If it is wrong, then why is it built into each of us? Stay with us as we try to truly understand human “coveting” and the role it plays – or doesn’t play - in our Christian lives.
Well, the day has come and gone. We got to once again experience Santa and reindeer, decorated trees and candy canes, presents, food, family, football, music, the trimmings, the trappings, the Grinch. Now that it is all said and done, let’s look back for a few minutes. In our celebration of Christmas, did we really celebrate the truest meaning of the day, or was that put aside? Well, we want to make sure the “reason for the season” was not forgotten – so, sit back, relax, and walk with us as we focus on the Real Christmas!