5 Reasons Why I Love Christmastime
By Robert (Bob) W. Jones
I love the Christmas season!
I’ve only been doing the pastor thing for 36 years and I can’t speak for every pastor’s experience but my ministry experiences with Christmastime have been rich.
I attribute my enjoyment to resisting the urge to be cynical of Christians or critical of those who want to do away with Christmas.
I can sum up my love of Christmastime in five reasons.
1. The sounds of Christmas are glorious!
How can you beat, “O Come All Ye Faithful,” “Silent Night,” or “Joy to The World” as calls to worship and devotion? Especially in a mall. Bring on the 24-hour-Christmas–music radio stations.
Christmas carols are singable – even for those who can’t hold a tune. Most everybody knows at least the first verse from a dozen carols. The music is majestic and the lyrics are hallmarked by expectation, joy, faith and wonder.
2. Christmas and kids make an inspirational combination.
I love our kids at North Pointe Church. Christmas is a great opportunity for children to deliver a profound message that adults can appreciate. I had a front row seat for three performances of “Felix Finds Christmas” on December 4th as our kids sang, acted and bee-bopped their way through the meaning of Christmas. What a fun presentation!
Looking at their angelic faces and the effort they put out to get their lines and notes right makes me happy that I can enjoy them at church and let their parents enjoy them the other six and 3/4 days of the week.
3. Volunteerism amps up at Christmas.
Think of all the people who volunteer, especially because it’s Christmastime. All ages and stages of faith get involved to sing in choirs, serve hot chocolate, pack Christmas baskets or Samaritan Purse shoeboxes and make sweets to share.
The Salvation Army Christmas Kettles, Santas Anonymous, The Festival of Trees and of all the free turkey dinners served to the homeless, to name a few efforts, are driven by volunteers.
Christmastime is community building.
4. Tis the season to care.
People enquire what our church is doing for Christmas to help the community. I tell them that we’re doing what we do the other 365 days of the year, only more of it – caring for people and their needs. People donate gifts and money to be given away anonymously at Christmas to families in need.
One family who was a recipient of anonymous generosity said, “Thank you from the bottom of our hearts! We are so sincere in our gratitude to you and everyone that does this for families. It brings tears to my eyes how much people care and do.”
5. Christmas brings hope even in grief.
As a pastor I know too well that blue can be the color of Christmas.
Almost every year of my ministry I have officiated a funeral around Christmas time. My mom unexpectedly passed away six days before Christmas. I remember our family driving by houses brilliantly shining with Christmas lights where people were celebrating while we were grieving.
As much as her death hurt, there was comfort in the assurance that she had passed from life to death to life again because of Christmas. Jesus was my mom’s Savior.
I love Christmas because “God so loved the world that he gave His only Son, Jesus.”
About this Contributor:
Robert (Bob) W. Jones is a recovering perfectionist, who collects Coca-Cola memorabilia and drinks Iced Tea. His office walls are adorned with his sons’ framed football jerseys, and his library shelves, with soul food. He has served as a pastor for 36 years and has enjoyed the past 26 years in leadership at North Pointe Community Church in Edmonton, Alberta.
Connect with Bob:
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