Joan Clayton: Religion Columnist
Christmas is a time to celebrate the greatest human event of all time. No other event compares to, or has affected history as much, as this man called Jesus. No other religion offers hope. None other brings relief. None other brings peace like the “Prince of Peace.” None other wants the highest good for its converts, and certainly no other religion gives life abundant here and an eternal home in the hereafter.
Yet with these wonderful truths, hostility arouses. Animosity stirs about Nativity scenes, Christmas plays, Christmas carols, Christmas trees and even the phrase “Merry Christmas.” Who wants to celebrate a “Winter Holiday?” Who wants to exchange gifts for “Winter Break?” I don’t want a holiday tree thank you. Who wants to say, “Happy Holidays” when without Jesus there wouldn’t be any? Take Jesus out of Christmas what is there to celebrate? Does the animosity occur because the Christ Child brings light to a dark world? Could it be because Christmas softens even the hardest heart?
So we celebrate the birth of our Lord. He gives instructions to live a happy, fulfilled life. Does any other do that? Show me something better than forgiving others their trespasses.
Physicians agree unforgiveness is poison to the physical body, resulting in degenerative diseases. (Matthew 6:14)
Show me something better than “loving your neighbor as yourself?” (Matthew 19:19) Relationships with others bring peace and harmony in the light of this scripture.
Please show me something better than peace of mind and soul: “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). Talk about a stress reliever … this is it!
I want to celebrate the birthday of the one who gives hope to the world. The Bible doesn’t give a specific date when Jesus was born, but at least this one time a year, the world hears a message of hope. Without hope there is no purpose in life, only emptiness, loneliness and frustration.
Christmas happens in the human heart. Even in the bleakest circumstances, Christmas occurs. The birth of the Christ Child restores hope for the soul, a hope that cannot be found anywhere else.
Jesus makes a pretty package, inside and out. So they can’t take Christmas away from me. It’s in my heart and it’s there to stay! Christmas is a celebration of life because of the one who gave his life. It puts a sparkle in the eyes of people at any age. The most wonderful time of the year reminds even the worst Scrooge that a Savior is born.
No matter how hard they try, they will never be able to take away Christmas from the human heart. Because of Christmas, we are once again reminded of God’s love for mankind.
I will not buy a “Holiday Tree.” I will buy a “Christmas tree.” I will not say “Happy Holidays” and I will not give a “holiday gift for a “Winter Holiday or Break.” I will give gifts with love and I will say, “MERRY CHRISTMAS!” I will do it because Jesus is “Joy to the World, a Savior is born.” My spirits will be lifted to the strains of “Silent Night” and “Away in A Manger.” I will do all the traditional things so close to my family’s heart.
John 3:16 rings loudly in our faith and we rejoice as we think of the Babe of Bethlehem born in a manger in a lowly stable.
Christmas is a time of cheer. A time for loved ones to be near.
The Christmas tree, the stockings hung. It’s time for carols to be sung.
For at this time we celebrate. All year long we anticipate.
The birth of Jesus long ago enables man … a conquering foe.
Let every heart be glad and sing our praises to the newborn King!