Last year you and I fervently believed in our cause and determined to carry it through. We passionately planned and prepared, convinced our motive was of the highest purity. The window of opportunity most likely would be open for four weeks tops. A mixture of our own ideas and ones we heard or read, the to-do list swelled like stuffing in a turkey until we knew we had to pick and choose. So individually we selected what we could do for the common goal of putting Christ in Christmas:
- Have an Advent wreath.
- Keep an Advent calendar.
- Display a creche in the front yard.
- Put “Happy Birthday, Jesus” decoration on the front door.
- Set doorbell to play “Silent Night.”
- Send religious Christmas cards.
- Take the time to write “Christmas” instead of “Xmas.”
- Display one or more nativity scenes in the house.
- Hang Christ-themed ornaments on the Christmas tree.
- Sing in a Christmas choir.
- Participate in Operation Christmas Child.
- Attend a performance of Handel’s “Messiah.”
- Bake a birthday cake for Jesus.
- Sing “Happy Birthday” to Jesus.
- Say “Merry Christmas” to everyone everywhere.
- Give to The Salvation Army.
- Make chrismon ornaments.
- Use mugs with “Jesus Is the Reason for the Season.”
- Play music of sacred Christmas songs throughout the season.
- Pass out gifts in a nursing facility.
- Watch Christmas movies that have a Christian theme.
- Join a community group to make Christmas baskets for the needy.
- Include in prayers thankfulness for God’s greatest gift.
- Go Christmas caroling.
- Attend Christmas Eve and/or Christmas Day church service.
- Give to Christmas offering for missionaries.
- Invite a lonely person to Christmas dinner.
- Read the Christmas story from Luke 2.
- Keep a Christmas journal.
Some devout hearts did not allow the window of their Christmas fervor to close until they had observed Epiphany twelve days after December 25. But we all did what we could to saturate our Christmas season with Christ, and all of us share the fruit of satisfaction from having worked for Christmas. As we expectantly wait for the window to reopen this year, now what?
Now begins the work of Christmas.
When the song of the angels is stilled,
When the star in the sky is gone,
When the kings and princes are home,
When the shepherds are back with their flock,
The work of Christmas begins:
To find the lost,
To heal the broken,
To feed the hungry,
To release the prisoner,
To rebuild the nations,
To bring peace among brothers,
To make music in the heart.
(“The Work of Christmas” by Howard Thurman)