Christmas around the world looks different. Baking, evergreens, poinsettias, and snow are not common themes. A common theme that ties them all together is a gift giver that is full of compassion to all. In America there’s Santa Claus. In Ecuador he’s called Papa Noel. In Egypt he’s called Baba Noel. France-Father Christmas. Puerto Rico-the Three Kings. Greece-St Basil. Yet in Luke 2:1-20 we find the true origin these gift givers attempt to mimic – the story of the Nativity, where the Greatest Gift was born, a gift that keeps on giving today.
Luke 2:11 “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.”
Luke 19:10 “ For the Son of man came to seek and to save.”
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.”
It amazes me how different cultures with different beliefs all have an innate pull towards celebrating this Miraculous birth and giving as God the Father gave His greatest gift, Jesus Christ, to save a sinful world.
Many people attempt to mimic a Christ-like figure that is full of compassion and gives gifts. But they cannot accomplish what The Son of God gave – true forgiveness of sin and eternal life. This gift of giving by the Heavenly Father of His only begotten Son is what we know as Christmas. It is to be symbolic of the greatest gift ever given to all of humanity: the Heavenly Father giving His one and only Son for us. No matter how you related in the past to the Christmas story, this Christmas is a new opportunity to have renewed hope, connection, and relation to this ultimate gift and the One who gave it to you. Share this special time with your family and friends, participate in all the fanfare of the holiday, and remember to celebrate the true meaning and reason for Christmas and truly live it all year long. For those who have accepted God’s gift, Jesus Christ, His message of hope, love, forgiveness, and grace that we see at Christmas is that gift that we carry with us all year long. That’s what makes us different. That’s what makes us a shining star in the sky so to speak, reflecting God’s hope and peace, illuminating the way to the Father, the Gift-Giver.