Favorite Christmas Memories
In our family there is not another holiday that carries more traditions and memories than Christmas. Most years the celebration begins the Friday after Thanksgiving as I make my way into the attic to bring down the decorations, while Tina turns on the Christmas music for the first time of the season. This tradition has been in place for our family since we moved to Shelby thirty years ago.
However some Christmas traditions have needed modifying since our children have married—those in-laws are killing us. Other Christmas traditions have been changed due to the passing of our loved ones—which also makes this time of year difficult. The celebration of Christmas has also changed with the grandchildren adding new traditions.
I remember many years ago when our parents and grandparents would give us gifts and we would be so excited as we ripped into them while seeing the joy on their faces. It was as if they enjoyed giving us our gifts more than opening or receiving their own. Something at the time I did not understand, until we had our own children and now our grandchildren. It is in those special moments we truly understand what Jesus meant when He said, “It is more blessed to give than receive.”
Which brings us back to the true meaning of Christmas.
“Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. Then the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.’” (Luke 2:8-12)
The greatest gift ever given to us came by way of Baby. A Baby that would grow to be a Man who would provide for us salvation—payment for our sin, a relationship with God, and a Heavenly home.
“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6)
So as you and your family, and as we, celebrate our traditions, remember those who have passed, and enjoy those we love—celebrate and remember the One this holiday is really all about—Jesus, the Babe in the Manger, the Man on the Cross, the One who sits at the right hand of the Father, and the One who will Return.
Bryan and Tina