Christmas 2012 is over. The presents are put away, the goodies have been eaten, thank you notes are written, the outside lights, decorations and tree have been taken down and everything has been packed away until next year. The one thing we don’t want to pack away until next year is the meaning of Christmas.

It never ceases to amaze me that during the Christmas season people become friendlier (except maybe in parking lots), are more open, more helpful, more giving and more caring. These are all attitudes and qualities that I hope we don’t pack away with our other Christmas decorations because they speak to the essence of what God desires for His people as we live for Him through faith in Jesus.

In Micah 6:8 we read, “He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” To live in justice, treating people fairly. To love mercy, and not just for ourselves, but to show mercy to others in the same measure, or even greater, than we have received ourselves. To walk humbly with God, living as God leads and directs in our lives, following the example of Jesus and putting the needs of others ahead of our own. Doesn’t that sound even better than our best Christmas behavior?

I may be a dreamer, but think about the impact that the church of Jesus Christ could have on the world if we chose to live like that 24/7, 12 months out of the year; showing people that being a Christian isn’t about following a religion but living in a personal relationship with the living God. Demonstrating to the world that Jesus loves them, died and rose from the dead so that they may experience forgiveness and life. Showing that life with Jesus isn’t missing out on the “fun” of the world but living in the joy of the Lord!

This year, let’s keep the Spirit of Christmas alive throughout the year and allow Jesus to work in and through us to show the world what it really means to live for Him.             

                                                                                Living in the Joy of the Lord,


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