When It Doesn’t Feel Like Christmas


An excerpt from Secrets My Father Told Me by Marie Antonio Bonifacio


Fill in the blank: “Only __ more days till Christmas!”

What? It’s December already? It’s enough to make the OC in me panic. Gifts to buy! Things to do! Plans to make! Family reunions! Food to order! People to host! Places to go! Bills to pay! Ay, caramba!

Sometimes, we feel it’s not Christmas unless:

  • we’ve bought our Christmas outfits (preferably red),
  • our home is all decorated,
  • all gifts have been bought and wrapped,
  • we received gifts, too,
  • the family picture has been taken,
  • all loved ones are gathered and complete,
  • the turkey/ham/family secret recipe has been served,
  • Santa Claus comes to town.

But the first Christmas had none of that. Joseph and Mary had:

  • no family or relatives with them,
  • no fancy décor,
  • no food,
  • no special place,
  • no room at the inn,
  • no Santa.

But there was Jesus.

1.    Christmas is complete when Jesus is present, and a meaningless event when Jesus is absent.

The good news is not that you’ve completed your Christmas shopping. The good news is, you have a SAVIOR.

And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”

Luke 2:9-11 NASB

2.    Christmas is an invitation to “Come as you are” to God’s presence

When the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another, “Let us go straight to Bethlehem then, and see this thing that has happened which the Lord has made known to us.” So they came in a hurry and found their way to Mary and Joseph, and the baby as He lay in the manger.

Luke 2:15-16 NASB

“Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east and have come to worship Him.”

Matthew 2:2 NASB

3.    Christmas is you receiving Jesus as the ultimate gift of all.

Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

James 1:17 NASB

Interesting how Joseph and Mary had no camera, no GoPro, or Instagram to record their special event, yet the whole world could still picture that scene to this day: Joseph and Mary leaning over the baby Jesus, angels singing, shepherds and Magi kneeling.

Joy to the world! The Lord has come! 

So dear reader, I don’t know what kind of Christmas you’re having this year. Maybe it’s filled with a flurry of activities, maybe it’s quiet like ours so far, but remember to CELEBRATE.

Celebrate, because you have Jesus.

Celebrate, because He gives you hope instead of fear.

Celebrate, because He invites you to come to Him, just as you are.

Most of all, He came to give you the best Christmas present of all.

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”

John 3:16 NASB

Points to ponder

What made that first Christmas special? How can you preserve that in your Christmas this year?

Share us your Christmas preparations and your thoughts about the first Christmas by commenting below!


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