Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Celebrating Christmas

There's no doubt about it... Christmas is coming! The stores are advertising toys with gusto, some radio stations are playing Christmas music nonstop, Facebook is abuzz with Christmas craft instructions and cookie recipes. I love the Christmas season!

But I have to wonder... why do we celebrate Christmas so fervently, but Easter so subtly? After all, when Jesus came, his purpose was to die for our sins. Jesus himself said that He came to fulfill the prophecy regarding a Savior (Matthew 5:17-18).

The miraculous thing He did was not being born; anyone can do that. I did it myself. (Of course, He was born of a virgin, I was not. But, again, this is not why He came.) The most important thing He did was to bleed and suffer so that our relationship with the creator God can be restored. He died on a cross, not having committed one sin, and rose from the dead after 3 days. And he ascended to heaven to sit on the right hand of His Father. This is why He came.

I'm not saying don't make a big deal out of Christmas. Far from it. Please, by all means, celebrate to your heart's content! I get my kids and husband presents, I make a big dinner, we read the story of Jesus's birth (Luke 2:1-20), we have baby Jesus birthday cake, we give to the poor, we donate to Toys for Tots, we try to help local ministries as much as we can out of the abundance God blessed us with. After all, if Jesus was never born, he couldn't heal the sick and teach the gospel, perform miracles, forgive sins, or die for us. Christmas is a big deal.

I'm saying we should celebrate Easter just as eagerly. I don't feel that Easter gets its proper due. We need to make Easter a bigger event. Easter is one day. Christmas is a whole season. This year, I'm going to try to observe Easter as I do Christmas. Even more thankful that Jesus not only came to Earth, but that he did what the prophecies said He would. He died for us. And defeated death by rising again, ans ascending to heaven. That's the real story of God's grace.