“The Most Wonderful Time of the Year”
The holiday hustle and bustle can be a bit overwhelming this time of the year. It all begins with the preparation for Thanksgiving, which leads right into Christmas. Families are trying to orchestrate the “who, what, when, and where” of their upcoming gatherings. There are many details to cover, such as the menu, grocery shopping, sleeping arrangements of guests, holiday travel routes—and finding the perfect gifts to purchase. All of this can lead a person to be overwhelmed with stress and strain to perform at their best. This is the reason Christians must have and live out a biblical worldview every day of our lives.
Christians can overcome the pressures of the holiday season by focusing on Christ and His work on their behalf. The reason many believers become stressed is because they fail to focus on the "why" of this time of the year. When we ask ourselves why we celebrate Thanksgiving and Christmas, it will help us to handle the stress of this time of year. When Christians remember that Thanksgiving is a time to reflect and give thanks to God for both our spiritual and material blessings in the Lord, it calms nerves. For the believer, Christmas is when we reflect on the truth that God, the eternal Son, robed Himself in flesh, was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, and gave Himself up as a substitute to redeem His people. Focusing on these truths removes ourselves from the picture and places Christ properly in view.
Christians should meditate on truth, such as Matthew 1:21, which says, "She [Mary] will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins." This reminds us of the true Reason for the season; Christmas is not a time of year that we focus on others or ourselves, for it should be focusing and worshipping Christ. Why? Think about it—if it were not for Christ, there would be nothing to be "thankful" for, nor any reason to celebrate "Christmas." When we meditate on the real Reason for the season—that Christ came to redeem us, free us, and, one day, save us—it leads believers to truly worship Him.
This time of the year is not about just giving and receiving or the hustle and bustle of fighting the crowds while searching for the perfect gift. It is about the worship of King Jesus. Yes, it is a time where we are thankful for all of our blessings and a time where we remember the birth of Christ, but mainly, it is the time where the truth of the eternal Son Who took on flesh and died as a substitute and arose on the third day should bring us to worship Him.
Therefore, when you feel the pressure, stress, and strain of the holiday season starting to hit you, I encourage you to slow down and meditate on what Christ has done for you. And may the meditation of Christ lead you to worship Him in Spirit and truth, because this is the most wonderful time of the year.