“Christmas is for kids”, I heard the man standing behind me say as he loaded his full cart onto the conveyor belt. There were toys, candies, electronics and children’s clothes. Did I mention the toys! He grunted as he loaded up the last item. He had obviously done a big work in this store, and he seemed weary.
“Someone is going to be very happy”, I said, giving the worn out dad a smile.
“I sure hope so”, he responded. “The older they get the more expensive it gets. But that’s what Christmas is all about, right, making them happy with a big haul at Christmas.”
As I left the store, I reflected on this dad’s words.
Do our kids associate Christmas with “a big haul” on the 25th of December, or is there more? Do our children know the great truths of Christmas?
Do our children know to keep Jesus the centre of Christmas? The toys, candy, clothes are wonderful, but do our children know that Jesus really is the reason why we celebrate.
Do our children recognize that greatness requires sacrifice? Think about the sacrifice that Mary and Joseph made in order to do something great for God, check out Luke 1 and 2 and Matthew 1. Greatness requires sacrifice. Is it not true for us as well?
Do our children know that God keeps His promises? God had been promising to send the Messiah for centuries and many of the Jews probably doubted if it would ever really happen. But God’s timing is perfect, and He always keeps His promises - then and now.
Do our children know that Jesus is the best gift ever? Do they know that Jesus is the best Christmas gift they will ever receive and that Jesus came for them? Do they know that God so loved the world that he sent his son Jesus to come a live among us? He was perfect in every way. He took the sin of the world upon him — your sin, my sin, our children’s sin — and died on the cross to redeem us. Why? Because God loves us that much. Do they know that?
Do our children know about the joy of giving? It’s so easy to become “me-centred” at Christmas. What are we doing to help our children understand and experience the great joy in giving? To thoughtfully prepare a gift and watch the expression of delight on the recipients face? Joy! To take money otherwise used for ourselves and donate it to a charity or give it to someone in need. JOY!
Do our children know that in this season of giving we can give a gift to Jesus? More than anything Jesus wants our love (Mark 12:30), and He also says that what we do for others we do for Him (Matthew 25:34-40).
Do we know?
It’s true. The man in the store was right, “Christmas is for kids!” And lucky for us we are all God’s children.
This Sunday the children and youth will lead us into worship as we continue to prepare are hearts and minds for the arrival of Jesus. Please do plan to be there.
There will be three opportunities on this third Sunday of Advent to win a special Amberlea Advent gift. Be sure to remember the secret phrase
and yell it out when I ask. Ready?
Here it is:
We are all God’s children!