As I write this, there has been an all-you-can-eat buffet of Christmas movies on the Family Channel today.
There are as many story lines as there movies. Sure, the variations are based on the same theme. The hero’s life is wrecked and Christmas comes to the rescue and makes everything right.
So what if there was no Christmas?
I’m a Christian. Christmas to me means that there is hope in his life that all this mess will be made right in the end. It means that everything wrong I ever did or was done to me was taken care of by One who came into the world as a baby born to die so I wouldn’t have to.
If Jesus hadn’t come, you’d have to define yourself. Maybe it would be based on what you do for a living. Maybe it’s the people you know and the places you hang out in.
That’s great as long as it works for you.
Here’s the problem. First, even if you have a stellar career with virtually no problems, the day will come when you won’t be able to do it anymore. If failure doesn’t get you, your health might. The people who own your company might sell it. The economy might make the place you work irrelevant.
Second, your friends can turn on you. If you live to please people, the day will come when you offend them. If you don’t, then one or more of them might offend you or let you down is some way. Since people run on emotions rather than logic, you can’t know beyond any shadow of a doubt who will be your friend for life and who won’t.
Third, if you define yourself by someplace you go to regularly, what will you do when the direction of the organization goes against what you believe?
While work, friends, and community involvement are an important part of our lives, they make a lousy foundation to build on.
If there was no Christmas, that would be all you’d have to believe in.
Go ahead and watch those Christmas movies. The story underneath every story is that what we’re yearning for every day of the year is found in what Jesus did to make everything sad untrue.
Now that is what I call a great Christmas gift.