"This is really the world's biggest birthday party. It should be celebrated as such every year. And our joy meter should be off the charts high."
Okay - I will say it. Years ago I wrote an article about the effect of crabby Christians. How much they hurt rather than help. Why do I say that? Christians are to be joyful. How joyful? Unbridled joyful. Because of the timeless gift God gave the world two thousand years ago, this joy should be with us 24 by 7. But we are human. Even the most devout follower of Christ does have his or her down times. But for the most part with Christ followers - joy is the name of the game.
Before Christ came to Earth, his birth had been prophesied for many years. People were excited - hopeful, that this great event could happen in their lifetime. They knew it would change everything for evermore. And it did.
It is at this time of year, when family comes home, when we exchange presents, when we go "all out" for the most fantastic Christmas meal possible, that sometimes the real meaning of the season goes unnoticed. Goes uncelebrated. This is really the world's biggest birthday party. It should be celebrated as such every year. And our joy meter should be off the charts high.
One of our former pastors would often tell us something very wise and sage. Sometimes the best way to witness your faith is just how you live your life. Where people can see you filled with the peace which passes all understanding. Where people can also see you filled with a joy which is almost uncontainable.
By the same token, when Christians hide their joy, when they don't even try to "walk the walk", it hurts the cause. It hurts the Kingdom. Trust me - I have been there many times, and deeply regret it. During those times, I have gained strength from others who let their joy shine like a lamp lighting a dark path. I am drawn to people like that. Many people are.
So this time of year, may we all say "Merry Christmas!" with all the gusto and joy this season deserves. As for me, I am cranking up the Christmas tunes as I prepare for the birthday party which starts on Sunday night goes all day Monday. Yes, Christmas does come but just once a year - and I will joyfully love each and every minute of it.