As we approach Christmas there are lots of things to keep in mind.
One is the reason for the season.
The whole reason that Christians celebrate Christmas is to celebrate the birth of Christ.
Sometimes that gets lost in the hustle and bustle though. Even for me.
I get caught up in whether this person likes this gift or should I have spent more money on it. Or what are we going to make for Christmas dinner? Will someone be upset if we aren’t home for Christmas?
Instead of focusing on the real reason for the celebration.
If you know me, you know that I read/listen to a ton of books on self-growth. I also take time and $$ to invest in that for my own wellbeing.
One of the people that I follow is Tony Robbins. And he says that where focus goes, energy flows.
You might be asking Dan why we are talking about focus and self-growth. This devotional is all about bringing Christ back into Christmas.
Just stick with me for a minute, I promise I’m getting there.
If we focus on all the questions we asked ourselves above, are we truly focusing on the real reason for the season?
And so our energy goes into buying gifts, pleasing other people, and what to make for dinner.
The good lord told us not to worry about any of that stuff. Matthew 6:25-34.
Instead, I want everyone to focus on Christ. focus on the gift that we were given when a virgin conceived a child. focus on the growth of that child and all that we know he has done for our world. Focus on what is to come from him as well. Our salvation and pathway to work our butts off for the best leader in the world.
When we start to focus on the real reason, Christ, our mindset changes and all that other stuff no longer matter.
The second thing to keep in mind is that while our world has commercialized all holidays, especially this one. Giving an expensive gift is not the most important thing.
I know of LOTS of people who dive deep into credit card debt for this holiday in particular. They spend more than they have to show someone they like (or don’t like) how much they care.
I want to encourage you to STOP right now. I know this is coming out way too close to Christmas to change your plans this year. But STOP right now and think about why you are giving gifts.
Is it because you feel obligated to?
Is it because you want to honor God’s gift to us?
I want to encourage you to read the book The Five Love Languages.
I know what you’re thinking, wow this guy really pushes this book. He must be getting some kind of kickback or percentage of the sales. But I’m not, it’s just that good of a book.
When you read it this time, don’t just think about your partner. Think about everyone in your life. See if you can figure out their love language.
Then when you give gifts stick close to their love language.
If someone craves quality time. Your gift might not be the hottest off of amazon. Instead, it might be a day out together where you grab lunch, go shopping and get your nails done. (I don’t recommend the last one if it’s a guy. But hey, you never know)
If they crave words of affirmation, give them the gifts of compliments throughout the year.
If they crave gifts, remember that a gift is something from the heart, not the pocketbook. For someone who truly loves gifts, it will never matter how much it costs, only the amount of thought you put into the gift.
If they crave physical touch. Then by all means give them more hugs. Be sure to give the gift of a warm hug every time you see them.
If they crave acts of service, then make it a point to do something nice for them multiple times. Like unloading the dishwasher or folding the clothes or picking up their papers off the printer at the office.
My whole point here is that when we give gifts it doesn’t matter how much it “hurts our pocketbook”. What really matters is that we tried our best to show our love.
So today we want to encourage everyone to pray. Pray now, pray often, pray more. Just Pray.
And as we work our way through the Christmas season be sure to think about the gift God gave us over 2000 years ago!
So when you see anyone don’t hesitate to tell them “MERRY Christmas” be sure to emphasize the CHRIST!
Today we want you to take action by changing the way you think. When you go looking for gifts or give gifts to others, think about Christ.
Think about what this person would really love. Just a little hint it might not be a gift that you can buy. It might be a lunch date or a dinner date or a weekend on the beach (everyone, except my dad, loves a weekend at the beach. He won’t even take a bath because the water gets over his ankles. Just kidding, but not really. Love you, dad).
Say Merry Christmas to everyone you meet. Don’t be scared to share your love for God with the world.
I can’t tell you the number of conversations I have had to start that ended up being GREAT for everyone in the conversation.
Be sure to even talk to strangers and tell them Merry Christmas.
When you write in the card of your gift (if you are giving one) include a verse that is close to your heart.
Since every verse in the bible is inspiring I like to close my eyes, focus on Christ, open the bible, take my finger and place it on the page, take a quick guess in my head what book it was opened up to and what chapter, (I like to make it a game), then open my eyes and read the verse that my finger is on.
Don’t tell anyone but that’s how I choose most of the verses for these devotionals. Lol
Then write that verse in the card. Share it with the world.
Whatever you do, remember to thank God for the gift he gave us that day so long ago and all the gifts that he gives us still today.
From all of us on the Eclipse DOT team and the Greer home.