Today’s missionary blogger serves in an area of the world where Christians can be persecuted for their faith. Her identity is not given for her protection and that of her family.
Christmas season here is different. I now live in a region where there is no sign of the Christmas season (except for the handful of believers whose homes are decorated on the inside). There’s no Christmas music playing on the radio, no decorations for sale, and certainly no cooler weather to invite Jack Frost to come visit! When we step outside our door, it’s as if it were the middle of August. That’s our city during the Christmas season.
However, I find this to be a very good thing. Throughout this past year, I have experienced many of my new friends’ holidays. I posed question after question regarding their traditions and why they would do this or that. Many times their actions seemed silly to me because they didn’t have an answer. Well, a few days ago, as my family and I were decorating our home for Christmas, I began to imagine a future conversation that I might have with one of my new friends: Why a tree? Why ornaments? Why THOSE ornaments? Why lights? Why cookies? Why Christmas parties? Why? Why? Why? All very good questions that are worthy of good answers. This made me think…hard.
First, my mind quickly raced to wondering if I even had answers to these questions. And if not, what does that mean? And if so, what are they? Are they answers that align with my ultimate and sole purpose of this holiday––the worship and exaltation of Christ? If not, then what?
Second, I began to be encouraged as I considered the creative options before me. Here in a region where Christ isn’t worshiped, where this holiday isn’t celebrated … this is a blank canvas yet to be painted! This is an opportunity for GREAT worship! This is where the Light shines most clearly and brightly––it is absolutely unmistakable. What an amazing blessing!
After my mind wrestled through the first two series of things, it settled on a resolution. Our Christmas celebrations will be intentional, purposeful, and meaningful. I will constantly ask myself, Why am I doing this right now? If the answer is not Christ-exalting, then something must change. I want to actively and intentionally seek new ways to display our worship of Him. Simple as that … adoration of the King.
Then, as though One gently whispered in my ear, “What if you asked yourself that question every day?”
What a Wonderful Counselor!