Chaplain: Three Reasons to Celebrate Christmas in 2020
By Allen Teal, Chaplain
“Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.” (Matthew 2:1-2, KJV)
What we choose to dwell on influences our mood, our outlook and our attitude. We might find it easy right now to see far more negative than positive surrounding us. Much of what we have heard and seen during the year 2020 has focused on the bad things. As we approach Christmas, redirecting our sight to the positive message of the Savior can improve our state of mind.
Christmas reminds us of God’s love.
God sent his Son to be the Savior because He loved the people of the world. Celebrating Christmas, even a toned-down version, can provide our spirits a lift. Giving gifts to bless those we love returns a blessing to us also. The Bible tells us that giving comes with rewards that exceed those of receiving.
Christmas speaks of a brighter future.
The premise guiding the Christmas story is more about tomorrow than today. Christ did not come to the earth just to improve our mortal existence. He came to offer us eternal life. The Apostle Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 15:19, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” Our travel through this life serves only as the on-ramp for eternity if Christ lives in us.
Christmas points toward Christ the King.
At the birth of Christ, rulers from the east made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem and Bethlehem to pay homage to a newborn king. This event made such an impression on them that they brought expensive gifts to offer him. These “wise men” grasped that this birth brought more than just another human king. Hebrew prophets had foretold this birth. A star, a celestial sign, heralded the event. The coming reign of Christ promises a future dominated by peace and goodwill for all. Merry Christmas!