Friday, December 16, 2016

Christmas on Sunday: Uh oh...

Occasionally Christmas falls on a Sunday--about one-seventh of the time, I would think. I have to admit that I don't like it. It messes with our Sunday routine and our Christmas routine. This interruption forces us to make choices, and it may make us think a little more clearly.

How is a Christian to celebrate Christmas on a Sunday? Some will bag the church service entirely; some will opt for part, but not all, of the Sunday services; some will probably go all out for Christmas at church.

Of course that will depend on what their church is offering.

Some churches have cancelled services entirely on December 25.
Some churches will have streamlined services, like we will at Crossroads.
I imagine that some churches may have even more elaborate services than usual.

Christmas on Sunday brings to my mind some questions.
Isn't Christmas all about Jesus? Isn't church all about Jesus? If so, wouldn't it be twice as celebratory to have both on the same day?

Or maybe Christmas is about family, food, decorations, music, and gifts. We have to consider our stated beliefs in light of our practices.

But at the same time, there is grace and freedom in Jesus. Celebrating Christmas (which is never called for in the Bible) should not become a legalistic requirement. Even Jesus missed some weekly synagogue services. Can we skip church on Christmas, and truly celebrate the freedom we have in Christ?

Do we really celebrate Jesus in our Christmas family gatherings? Or is Christmas just a good occasion to gather family and friends?

Maybe I'm the only one to get so analytical here. Or maybe a lot of believers are thinking this, and I'm just saying it.

Here's my encouragement to you: Let Jesus break through to you as you celebrate his birth on Sunday this year. Enjoy your freedom in Christ, purchased for you on the cross. Know that he came for you and longs to enjoy your fellowship--whether that is around the fireplace, the dinner table, or in a worship service.

Receive the blessing of Jesus this Christmas!

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