Advent: Christmas

There’s a feeling common to most of us; it usually comes on in late afternoon or early evening Christmas Day. After all the presents have been opened and most of the food has been eaten (at least the first round of it), you look around at the remnants of Christmas morning and a sense of sadness begins to creep in. All the buildup over the last month (or half of the year for your favorite craft store)—the decorations, the music, the parties, the shopping—has led to this moment, and now it’s over. Christmas melodies fade into post-Christmas melancholy.

It’s because there is more. We’re conditioned to think that Christmas is an end in and of itself—that the gifts and the lights are the real stuff. And so, when the day has passed, we’re left with 365 days to wait until we do it all over again. But here’s the truth—Christmas does not signify an end, but a beginning. As Jesus begins His earthly ministry in Mark’s Gospel, He proclaims, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” The good news is that Jesus has come to reign as our King and is coming again soon to fully realize His kingship.

REFLECTION

What was Christmas typically like when you were growing up? What event signaled the end of Christmas for you? How did you feel as the season came to a close?

What are some practical ways you can continue to live in the joy of the Savior’s reign, even after the Christmas activities are all finished? Isaiah reminds us that Jesus is the Prince of Peace and of His government and peace there will be no end.

Where might God be leading you to be a messenger of His peace this season? What steps can you take this week to speak words of Jesus’ peace?

From "Seasons" by The Village Church