Whose birthday is it, anyway?
By Pastor Bill Smith
Trinity Chapel, Little Falls
On America’s birthday, whose birthday do we celebrate? Why, America’s, of course! When we celebrate Martin Luther King’s birthday the news media will, all day long, broadcast the life and history of Martin Luther King. We still recognize and honor President Ronald Reagan on his birthday; as well as other great presidents — Lincoln and Washington, for example. On my birthday — I am the focus of attention.
One of our daughters and our son have birthdays four days apart. Can you imagine what would happen if we would celebrate our daughter’s birthday on our son’s birthday — or vice versa? How would they feel? Would we ever hear the end of it?
So, have you ever wondered why it is that on the day that is set aside to celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ — who, in my opinion, is to be placed ahead of any other — we do exactly that? We recognize that it is his birthday, but we will celebrate and honor everyone else but him?
Know that while Jesus’ birth occurred some 2,000 years ago, Hebrews 13:8 reminds us that he is the same yesterday, today and forever. He is just as alive today as he was the night of His birth. His birthday was just a prelude of his death and resurrection — proving him to be the eternal Son of God.
As you prepare for the Christmas holidays this year, would you prayerfully consider a Christmas experiment with me? Put your main focus on Jesus this year for his birthday. Go ahead, decorate for his birthday party but give gifts to him first. If you have not given him the thing he wants most — your heart and life — then start with that. Maybe you could give a special gift to your church and/or a ministry that performs his works. Maybe, instead of lavishing gifts on family and friends who are already so blessed they really don’t need anything and you have to search high and low to find something they can use, you can, instead, find a needy family or two and give them a special Christmas, consequently conveying to them the true significance of the birthday of the King of Kings.
I believe you will find that the entire Christmas season will have a much deeper significance to you and to those whom you gift when you truly honor Christ and celebrate him on his birthday.
Celebrate Jesus. Adore him, worship him, love him, obey him.