Christmas trees, sparkling lights, mince pies & overfilled Christmas stockings, don't you just love Christmas! I certainly do, but for the first time in my 26 years on this earth I feel a huge responsibility & in a way a sense of conviction. As far back as I can remember Christmas has been a time mainly focussed on me & mine. I write cards & buy presents for all the people closest to me. I do a special Christmas food shop & then pretty much indulge in treats over the whole Christmas period. The majority, no let me be totally honest, the whole of my Christmas preparation & Christmas festivities are focused around me & my family with Jesus added in here & there.
Enter Joah Michael Bostock my beautiful son who already in his 1st year of life has taught me so much. You see, it's through his life that I've realised just how wrong I've got it for the last 25 Christmases. I'd made Christmas a time to indulge in selfishness, the total opposite of the true reason for the season, Jesus Christ. Yes my family & I tried to make it about Jesus but all the presents, the food, the parties, they kind of took over.
When my son was born he changed our lives, nothing is the same since he arrived & at any given opportunity we celebrate him. How much more so should we celebrate the Saviour of the whole world, the one who truly changes our lives, the one who actually gave us life. We as a family have realised how much richer & more beautiful the Christmas season will be when we spotlight it on Jesus. The amazing thing is when we focus on Jesus we become more like Him, with that comes giving & caring. We want Joah to grow up knowing that Christmas is a time to bless others & help those in need & to actually enjoy doing so. Of course he's still too young to actively go out & be a blessing but when he is old enough we will encourage him to do so.
I feel that we are so used to 'spoiling' our children that it is totally accepted & unfortunately expected. Of course I want to see my son's little face light up when he unwraps gifts on Christmas morning but I don't want him to have a mountain's worth of gifts, I can almost guarantee that by the time he were to reach the top of that present mountain that he will have forgotten what was at the bottom of the pile. So, instead of getting Joah loads of presents we are choosing 3 special ones. Normally when December 25th rolls my heart has been conditioned to receive but this time I'm looking for ways to give instead. As a family we have been looking for different ways to bless others. We've bought presents & food hampers for the local refugee children & families & we also want to spend time going out to talk with & give gifts to women who work in prostitution. As our son grows up we want him to appreciate what he has & to give to others just as Jesus taught us to, so it's our responsibility to lead by example.
Romans 12v2 says "Do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.."
So far in my life the way the world does Christmas has been my norm but now I understand that God gave us the greatest gift in history when He gave us His only son. So this Christmas I dare you to rethink, repent and re-do Christmas, WITH JESUS!
Have a beautifully blessed Christmas.
All my love,