Psalms 18:1-3 Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal's death on a cross.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!
The greatest gift you can give your family is Time
6 And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born. 7 She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them. Luke 2:6-7
The Son of God was born in a stable. The Lamb of God lain in a manger.
Could there be a more humble beginning for a king? After traveling around seventy-five miles with a pregnant wife who was due any day, Joseph and Mary arrive in Bethlehem and cannot find any lodging. Why? Probably because of the number of people reporting for the census.
Now if I am Mary and Joseph, I probably would have thought that after being visited by angels and told about the eternal, dimension altering child that was to be born that I would at least find a peaceful, clean room for the birth. It was not to be so.
Could there be a more humble beginning for a newborn? Make no mistake this child was neither neglected nor unloved, but he was laid in a manger after being wrapped up in cloths. The environment was less than ideal probably unclean and certainly unsterile but God protected.
In this even the world was changed. In this even my life was changed.
So was yours.
My life and your life has meaning, importance and value. His birth, life, death and resurrection demonstrate the great value placed upon you and I by our heavenly Father. The life we have been given while at times a hard and difficult path is blessed.
Our lives were bought with a great price and yet, at least for me, I physically squandered many years of my life away. Living less than up to my potential simply because I failed to embrace proper care of my physical body. Don’t misunderstand it is not that our physical health takes priority over everything, but that it is more than a wish or after thought. When we are physically fit, we are more productive in all areas of life.
Jesus came that we might have life. For most of us that life can be a healthy life if we choose to make it so. Even for those who have physical short-comings and disease brought about by nothing they have done, living healthy can give them strength to endure even their other physical challenges.
He came that we might live.
I shared in the very first blog of this series that I personally love Christmas. It is a remarkable time of year. Each Christmas my family has traditions that we enjoy - as you read through this blog series you will be able to conclude what is important to our family as we celebrate this season.
One of the things that makes our immediate and extended family a wonderful group is our laughter. Now I’m not suggesting that my family is funnier or laughs more effectively or even laughs more than most other families. What I am suggesting is that Christmas is a time for laughter.
One of my favorite Christmas films is one that makes me laugh hard every time I see it. Watch and enjoy Buddy!
Most of my very best childhood memories come from the Christmas season. I could share with you story after story of our laughter and good times as a family. Some of those memories make me laugh and others bring a smile to my face because it was an event that touched my heart.
I remember family Christmases where my Grandpa Andrews would dress up like Santa Clause and bring gifts to all the kids: I was so shocked to learn that Santa had a Texas drawl to his speech! Another time my cousin Scott who was probably about 9 years old walked into our home with his family carrying wrapped Christmas gifts. He handed me my wrapped gift and said, “Here’s your gloves!” I remember how much we laughed about that!
I’m sure that if we could sit down over a cup of coffee you could share some moments from your Christmas memories that would have us both laughing out loud.
Laughter is a sign of the season, and I know that even in the dark times we need to laugh. One of the greatest times of laughter was right around Christmas when my Grandmother Andrews had passed. We were at the dinner following the funeral. At first it was so sad, but people began to share stories about Grandma where she had been funny, or she had done something really special for someone. We laughed and laughed. It was a testament to her love for life.
Gather with your friends and family. Share your family stories and let your young ones laugh with you or watch one of your favorite Christmas movies and laugh. Laughter is good for you, your family and friends. Remember, laughter is highly underrated!
Christmas is a time for laughter.