Merry Christmas!

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A Look Deeper By David Steinbron
Sunday, December 26, 2021
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Merry Christmas! What an awesome statement really. This time of year, there are so many ways we can wish people well during this season. However, I cannot think of one that is better than Merry Christmas. For most people here in the United States this holiday season is rooted in the original, traditional Christmas, the reason for the season, the birth of Jesus.

The “holiday” season gets mixed around because of all the other celebrations this time of year from Thanksgiving to Kwanzaa and Hanukkah and New Year’s Day, but it is Christmas that has held this whole season together. Christmas the celebration of the Messiah. The Savior of all from sin and death, the gift of God’s grace given to bring everlasting or eternal life to all who will receive it. What a great reason to have a celebration.

In the gift that God has given it has become a tradition to give gifts on what is really celebrated as the birthday of Jesus. What is the gift that God has given to every man, woman and child? Is it hope, love, joy and peace? Yes! Is it forgiveness of sins? Yes! Is it a promise of life in heaven and being sparred the torment of hell? Yes and Yes!

These are all perfectly good and even great reasons to celebrate God sending Jesus from heaven to be born in a cattle stall and laid in a manger. It is a super reason for God to cease His silence and send angels to earth to proclaim the Good News of Jesus to lowly shepherds and for wisemen to travel from afar to bring gifts to the newborn King. To all that, today we still say Merry Christmas!

What if I were to tell you there is much more, something even greater than all of that, an amazingly awesome reason to be merry. It all still has to do with God’s love and what Jesus was sent from heaven to earth to do. Jesus was sent to restore or renew our personal relationship with God. That’s right God not only wants to love you, save you and provide for you; He wants to be with you. He wants to share life with you. He wants to be an active, real, and present part of your life. Just like you are with family and friends, God wants to have an even cloer relationship with you. Imagine that for a moment, the God of all creation wants to have a relationship with little ole’ you and me. That is awesome. That is a reason to shout Merry Christmas from the rooftops, mountain tops, table tops, box tops, tip-tops and every other top and place possible.

Did you know there are all kinds of ways the word merry gets defined, one dictionary defines it as “cheerful and lively”. Another as “full of gaiety or high spirits”. In the Bible in the Old and New Testaments it is generally used to express the idea of being joyful and rejoicing or doing or being part of a good thing. In any definition merry is something most people want to be part of. That is why we tell people Merry Christmas because it is a reminder of the greatest thing we could ever be part of - a relationship with God.

So, this season and every other season when you hear someone say Merry Christmas or when you say Merry Christmas yourself focus on the joy, cheerful, lively, high spirited intention that was given in God’s gift of love and grace that we know as Jesus. God loves us each so much He has given us His fullness to be merry about each and everyday of our life. So, one more time I say Merry Christmas to each of you, let Him be your joy today and everyday!

David Steinbron is the pastor at the Glendive Evangelical Church. He can be reached at daalstein@gmail.com.

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