Dec 23 09

Merry Christmas

vmsmith

Without doubt, December is the busiest time of year for our church. In addition to our many duties at home, there are Christmas plays in the school, holiday dinners for adults and teenagers, there are decorations to be put up, not to mention that we are ending the church fiscal year which means a new budget to formulate and elections for new officers for 2010.

It becomes a bit overwhelming trying to juggle all of this and have enough time to relax and enjoy one of the most blessed times of the year. In today’s message, I want to take a look at the remarkable change that has come to the world because of Christ. Everything we do in December happens only because of Him. Without His birth, December would be as mundane as any other month. I suppose then that some would seek to blame Christ. We wouldn’t go through this if not for Him. And thus we see how badly the world really needs Christ. Complaints about Christmas are about our inconvenience, which just show how badly we needed Christ to come and take away our inordinate focus on self. Should we complain that the world should be saved at the expense of our convenience?

Each year we complain more and more about the commercialization of Christmas. It used to really bother me, but then I began to realize that a false view of Christ and the false worship of Christ that goes on in so many churches are far worse than commercialization. If you sit in church and worship a false Christ by bowing before a crucifix or praying to the Virgin Mary, you would be far better off spending your time fighting the crowds in the aisles at Wal-Mart! The trip to hell from a church pew can be faster and with more fury than from ignoring church altogether and arguing over a Barbie doll in a department store.

I think we need to redirect our efforts from putting Christ back in Christmas to putting Christ back in hearts. The gospel must be preached in truth or else Christ was never in that type of Christmas. We are saved by faith alone through grace alone in Christ alone. Christ was never in anybody’s Christmas who believes otherwise.

No matter how much we are inconvenienced by the busyness of the season, the cost is worth it because at no other time do we have such opportunity to give the message of Christ. We will not let the opportunity pass us by. Today, we will preach the real Christ; the Christ of the Bible—He and He alone will save.

Pastor V. Mark Smith