16th December 2019

Christmas Decorations!

“The birth of Jesus Christ came about this way: After his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, it was discovered before they came together that she was pregnant from the Holy Spirit.”
Matthew 1:18 ( CSB )

According to retailer, John Lewis, sales of artificial Christmas Trees are booming this year. Ten years ago their best seller was 4 feet high, today it is the 7 foot high tree! These artificial trees come ready loaded with lights, and in some cases even the decorations. John Lewis feels the reason behind this demand for bigger trees is the growth of social media and the desire to post an impressive Christmas picture.

Somewhere the simple Christmas message has been lost. There is nothing wrong with trees, lights, decorations and giving gifts at this time of year. For many it may be the only time the whole family, or most of it, can meet together. But what are we really celebrating at Christmas? An abundance of food, drink and presents, or the birth of a child? How many people today even connect Christmas with the birth of a special child? Maybe it’s a vague memory in the background, but perhaps it’s more important to impress the neighbours and our online friends.

While Christmas has been turned into a commercial festival for some, many still remember the real meaning. We are celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ, a unique child, who was and is, both fully God and fully human. It is a celebration of God entering our world for our benefit, prepared to sacrifice himself to pay the penalty of death for our sins.

Jesus did not remain a baby—He grew up and lived a perfect sinless life, even though He was subject to the temptations of his human nature. In his brief human life he trained a small number of disciples and started his church, then voluntarily gave his life in the agonisingly painful death on the cross. Then, to the amazement of that small group of disciples, He was resurrected and spent 40 days on earth with them, teaching and guiding them, before ascending to God’s throne in heaven. He is now our intercessor, our high priest and our soon coming King! Yes the return of Christ is certain, not as a baby, but as a King. In this short message we can’t give you all the Bible details showing this is true, as incredible as it sounds. But don’t let the commercialism of Christmas block out the real meaning of this time of year, as our heading scripture makes clear.

Prayer
Gracious, loving Father, help us to grasp the full meaning of Christmas and the incredible love behind the birth, human life and death of Jesus. It is so awesome it is hard to fully grasp and appreciate what has been done for us. Do not let us be blinded by our culture’s commercialism to the real meaning of this time. In Jesus’ name we pray.
Amen

Study by Keith Hartrick
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About the Author:
Keith Hartrick is an Elder in Grace Communion Church – Leeds.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion – Leeds
Garden Village Welfare Association Community Centre
Pendas Way
LEEDS
LS15 8LE

Meeting Time:
Saturday 2PM

Local Congregational Contact:
Malcolm Arnold
Phone: 01484-312347
Email: leeds@gracecom.church

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