Away from the Manger: The fall from the true Christmas story
“Go, tell it on the mountain. Over the hills and everywhere. Go, tell it on the mountain; Jesus Christ is born.” This verse from an iconic Christian Christmas song is known by millions of people. It embodies the true meaning of the holiday. We are called by God to celebrate the birth of the Messiah, the one who will defeat sin and save us from ourselves. Yet, every year, we as Christians begin to fall farther from the true meaning of Christmas and turn it into a Hallmark Holiday. I see it with my own eyes. Instead of going to church and praising our Lord’s birth on Earth, Christians go to the shopping malls and out partying. Instead of spending quality time with our loved ones, we continue to allow family feuds to divide our homes. Instead of helping those in need and sharing the love of God, we spend countless amounts of money on consumer goods that will be pointless in our lives within a month. And most importantly, instead of sharing the good news of the Birth of Salvation, we share hatred and anger when things go exactly to our liking. This is an issue that amplifies every year. It is even seen with the name of our celebration, Christmas, being changed to “Holiday Season” in an attempt to snuff out the embodiment of our salvation. And no one bats an eye.
For us to continue our tradition of the true Christmas story and avoid continuing down this path of sorrow, we must relearn what it means to be Christians, what it means to be saved, and what it means to share this wonderful news with others. As Christians, we believe that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary in the town of Bethlehem. This was the start of our path to Salvation. We believe that Jesus Christ was crucified, died, and was buried. In three days, He rose from the dead. This is the sign of Salvation. For these events to happen, Christ needed to be born. And that is what the celebration of Christmas is all about: the Birth of Christ. The gifts we receive represent not only the gifts given to Christ by the wise men but also the gift of Christ given to us. This whole celebration stems from God’s love for us and His willingness to sacrifice His Son to save us from eternal damnation. So, then, how can we change our ways and get back on the correct way to celebrate Christmas?
The Lord calls us to treat others how we would like to be treated. We must take this command to heart during the holiday season and provide for others before ourselves, much like how Christ provided for us before Himself. I challenge everyone to go out and provide for others in any way possible this Christmas, and while doing so, teach those encountered about the Good News of Christ. It doesn’t have to be a monetary provision but could be something as simple as helping shovel a neighbor’s driveway or assisting at a soup shelter. Anything and everything done this Christmas should be an embodiment of the love of Christ and the Good News of His Birth. “Go, tell it on the mountain. Over the hills and everywhere. Go, tell it on the mountain; Jesus Christ is born.”