FOR THE CHRISTIAN, every day can be Christmas! Jesus showers His love down on us every day of the year. But sad to say, it’s not that way for so many poor folks who haven’t yet found the real meaning of Christmas.
So many people are lost, lonely, downtrodden, weak, and weary. Some are weak in their bodies, others are weak in their minds, and yet others are weak in body, mind, and spirit.
There are those who are trampled on: the poor, the persecuted, the hungry, victims of war and crime and exploitation; those nobody wants or cares about, those who have so little in the way of worldly goods, those who lack even the basic necessities.
Then there are others who do have material goods and who appear to “have it together” in the eyes of others, but who are lost and lonely prisoners of their own selfish desires. They are weary and heavy laden with problems, stress, fears, and phobias.
There are those who wear a smile, yet ache inside; those who are engulfed in a sea of emptiness; those who suffer from pain, guilt, bitterness, and condemnation; those who feel remorse over the past or fear the future—so many lost and desperate folks in the world today!
It reminds me of the refrain from an old Beatles song, “All the lonely people, where do they all come from?” Well, I’ll tell you where they come from—all the lonely people come from selfish living.
All the lonely people, the lost and the forlorn, come from a society where people look to their own needs and not to the needs of others. That’s where all the lonely people come from—from a dog-eat-dog society, from a lot of wrongful living. They’re products of the Devil’s own doctrines of “do your own thing” and “to each his own.” That’s where all the lonely people come from. All those lonely people are the product of a world that has forgotten its Creator. They’re victims, the sad result of what happens when people’s lives aren’t ruled by love.
It’s getting darker and colder all the time, and many people can feel it. They may not understand it, and they don’t always want to admit it, but it’s happening. The sun is setting, the darkness is falling, and the world is looking for hope, for some ray of light.
Event after event has left the nations questioning. “Why this and why that? Why all the pain and strife in the world? Why the slaughter of the innocents? Why troubles and sorrows?” These questions are being raised in people’s hearts and minds, and those whose foundations have been built on the sand, or others who had no foundations to begin with, have no answers. Never has the world been hungrier for true love and real answers than now!
It’s reminiscent of that famous Christmas carol “O Holy Night”: “O holy night, the stars are brightly shining! It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth. Long lay the world in sin and [sorrow] pining. ...”
There’s so much talk about the “advancement” and “betterment” of mankind—advanced medicine, modern technology, new inventions, better governments to make ours a better world to live in—so much talk of progress, when in reality things are regressing all the more. Look around! Today people are lying in sin, sorrowful and pining away on the inside. There’s so much confusion, so many voices saying, “This is the way to go,” so many false claims deceiving the people. The world needs to hear the truth!
How does the rest of that song go? “A thrill of hope! The weary soul rejoices, for yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!” The world needs that ray of hope! People need to hear about the new and glorious morning that is just around the corner.
The refrain is also very significant: “Fall on your knees! Oh, hear the angels’ voices!” Just like the shepherds heard the angels announce the birth of Christ, the Lord wants the people of the world to hear those angels’ voices today.
And I’ve got news for you: You can be one of those angels. You can be one of those Christmas angels sent from Jesus Himself to proclaim the good news to the lost and lonely of the world, to give them the ray of hope they have been waiting for.
In this day of hatred and hardness of hearts, of confusion and deception, of scheming and sly words, of false fronts and cover-ups, there is a great need for His love to shine through. As the darkness falls and the cold winds blow, you must hold up the light. You must hold it up steady and firm for all to see.
Love in action
Not only do people need to hear the truth, but they need to see the truth. People not only need to hear about true love, they need to see it. They need to see love put into action!
Jesus said, “By this shall all men know that you are My disciples, if you have love one toward another” (John 13:35). It’s not good enough to just talk about love. Jesus said you have to have love, you have to live love.
What can you give Him?
This Christmas and throughout the coming year, give Jesus the gifts that He’s most pleased with—gifts of love. Give your love. Give of yourself. Shine forth the love and sweetness of Jesus through the light of your eyes, a loving look, kind speech, and kind deeds. Be like Jesus for others. Be the living sample of the message, the living proof that it works.
What better way to live Christmas each and every day of the year than to continually give to those around you, to truly live as He taught us, to show His love in all the little ways throughout the day, to show the world living proof that the love of Jesus works!
Back to the carol: “Truly He taught us to love one another; His law is love, and His Gospel is peace!” He’s entrusted you, His child, with His law, which is love. Now He’s trusting you to follow it, to make it work, and to live in love, that by this all men may know that you are His disciples.
Pray and ask the Lord to help you live Christmas each and every day of the year by helping you follow His great commandment to love your neighbor as yourself. This is the real meaning of Christmas. This is the reason for it all. This is the reason Jesus came down at Christmas in the first place—so we could have life eternal, yes, but also to teach us to love, so we could turn around and share that life with others.
Give of yourself. Give others your love, your prayers, your time, your attention, your care. Love God by loving your neighbor. Expand your love this Christmas! Be an angel!
Quote: Christmas is love in action. Every time we love, every time we give, it’s Christmas.—Dale Evans Rogers