We just completed Black Friday, which really began on Thursday, and Cyber Monday, which really ran all weekend. If we had gone to stores on Black Friday or posted a survey online on Cyber Monday and asked people why they celebrated Christmas I suspect we would receive a variety of answers.

Some would say that Christmas is a time of giving while others would say it’s a time of receiving. Some would say it’s a time of love and others would say it’s all about family. And of course, many would say that it’s all about getting the best deal possible.

All of these answers speak to an element of the true meaning of Christmas, but which answer do you think comes the closest to God’s perspective about Christmas? You may be surprised, but it’s the one that says Christmas is a time of receiving.

Romans 6:23 tells us, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” And in Matthew 1:21, regarding Jesus’ impending birth we read, “She (Mary) will give birth to a son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.”

Because of His immeasurable love for us, God came to earth in human flesh as Jesus, what we call the Incarnation, to pay the price for our sin so that as we receive Jesus into our hearts we may also receive the incredible gifts of forgiveness and eternal life that He offers to all who accept Him.

As we celebrate this Christmas season, in all that we do let’s focus on the true reason for the joy and celebration of the season; God has given us the most wondrous gift of all, Jesus, who freely gives us eternal life through faith in Him. What better gift could we ever receive?

                                    With Thanksgiving,

                                                            Mark