I Love The Christ of Christmas by John Wiles
The following was written by my good friend John Wiles, owner of Best Wings Shooting. I cannot overstate how much I agree with him. See his website at the end of article.
I have some friends who don’t celebrate Christmas. They say Jesus wasn’t born on December 25th. They say the Christmas tree, holly and ivy, mistletoe, lights, ornaments, and, of course, Santa Claus, are all pagan trappings put on the birth of Christ to satisfy the Roman’s desire to appease everyone at the time the Christmas celebration was solidified by Emperor Constantine about 330 years after Jesus’s death. Maybe He wasn’t born in December, or even the winter, and there is little doubt that all those other things I mentioned do have pagan roots.
I say, “So what?”
I don’t celebrate a ‘day’ particularly; I celebrate ‘Christmas Day’. It could be May 3rd, June 9th, or October 11th. We simply don’t know the actual date Christ was born. It’s just that somewhere along the line people much smarter than me, who, I would think, prayed about this and believed they were doing the right thing, decided to make the birth date of Christ a date which over time became the 25th of December on our current calendar. Even if their motives were wrong in trying to appease a captive, pagan audience, look what God, in His infinite wisdom, did with their ‘mistake’. He introduced the story of Christ into pagan society, theology, and worship; a Christ whose birth, life, death, and resurrection would be the platform for man to restore his broken relationship with God.
I don’t put up a tree to worship Saturn, Baal, Odin, Mithra, or any other pagan god. My thoughts are about an ‘event’ that actually did take place over 2000 years ago. A child was born unlike any child before or since. He was born of a virgin mother (put that through your logic calculator and see how far you get), was born into a Jewish family, was raised in the Jewish tradition, spoke in the Jewish synagogue, walked everywhere he went (except for an occasional donkey or boat ride), and at the end of his 30 something year life, was killed by Jews, his own people. He rose from the dead and appeared in the flesh to many people, most of whom were killed by some horrible means in an effort to get them to deny he had come back from the dead, and I suspect, to get those people to tell the rulers where the body was hidden. No one would, or could, deny his existence, especially the ones who had seen him, and there was no body, because he was alive – then, now, and forevermore. I wasn’t kidding about world changing events that defied the logic of that time and this one.
That singular event, though, the birth of Yeshua, the Jewish name for Jesus, would be the initiating factor that would, in fact, change the world … forever. The Son of God who referred to himself as the Son of Man, who was both God and Man simultaneously, who put mud made from spit on blind people’s eyes and gave them the gift of sight, who touched the lame, the leper, the sick, even the dead and made them whole again; the one who spoke to the winds and waves, and they obeyed; the one who simply spoke that which was not as if it were and made it become so, that Jesus, was born.
I celebrate that event. I often start around November 1st and continue through January. If I could extend the feelings that come about during Christmas over six months, I would.
When I see a Christmas tree, I see the light of love shining out of our living room window to tell all who see it that love lives in our house. Love lives in our house because we are loved by a far greater love than we can know or comprehend – the love of God; the love of Jesus, the Christ; and the love of the Holy Spirit that lives within all of us who believe. One cannot use logic to explain miracles or to explain a love so great that it would take on death to restore life to the lost, and make them found.
The gifts under the tree are not some unbridled holiday shopping spree; they are tokens of genuine caring, affection, and love for someone. The stockings that Santa Clause fills are reflections of the magic of Christmas. What magic you say? The magic that a name, Jesus; a date, December 25th; and a season, Christmas, can bring to an overworked, angry, disillusioned, profit of doom filled, and sorrowful world … the world in which we often find ourselves living. We call it the magic of love. The magic of love, found on the faces and in the hearts of every small child who has ever heard of Christmas, lives here. The magic of love we find in our own hearts, when we stop swearing at other drivers and actually wave them into our lane, or we start smiling at people we see at the store, the post office, or the hospital, is alive during this season.
The Christmas lights are a sign of hope – Christ, the hope of the world, and if the world ever needed hope, it needs it now. The Yule Log, the burning candles, the Christmas village, the elves, the watching of A Christmas Carol, White Christmas, Miracle on 34th Street, Scrooged, and any other holiday favorite you might have remind me, and hopefully those reading this, of how the light of love can overcome the darkness, and that we truly are what we believe. Because of that, it is important to believe in good things, in important things, in spiritual things, in a Christ we have not seen, in a love we cannot comprehend, in ourselves, and in others, so that we can be a light to someone who needs that light to dispel their own personal darkness.
Christmas is the one time of the year when we take the weight off our shoulders for at least a day, and we say, “Thank you, Lord. Thank you for Your love. Thank you for loving me. Thank you that I have friends like these, who I love as fellow travelers on the road of life. Thank You for the light, the magic, and the love they bring into my life. May you, dear God, in all your wonder and caring, bless them, and let us share some wonderful times together in the future of this world and in the world to come. In Jesus name. Amen.”
God bless you, Merry Christmas!
“Wingshooting is my passion, and my business.” – John Wiles
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About the Author
Mychal S. Massie is an ordained minister who spent 13 years in full-time Christian Ministry. Today he serves as founder and Chairman of the Racial Policy Center (RPC), a think tank he officially founded in September 2015. RPC advocates for a colorblind society. He was founder and president of the non-profit “In His Name Ministries.” He is the former National Chairman of a conservative Capitol Hill think tank; and a former member of the think tank National Center for Public Policy Research. Read entire bio here