Christmas is a unique time of the year.  Even though the actual birth of Jesus was probably in October, in fulfillment of the Biblical Feast of Tabernacles (God coming to earth in human form to tabernacle amongst us), most of western society celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ in December at Christmas time. The purpose of the celebration, however, is to recognize that God sent His only Son, born of a virgin, who would one day become the Lamb slain for the salvation of all mankind.  There has never been, or ever will be, a greater gift of sacrifice.

Over time, the giving of gifts has become a tradition at Christmas.  For a parent of young children, the fact that it’s more blessed to give than receive could not be more obvious than it is on Christmas morning.  We all long for the joy that comes when we see others blessed with our gift.

However, it’s easy to get carried away or feel pressured and spend beyond our means. The spirit of Mammon misses no opportunity to further enslave people through debt. I ran across a recent statistic citing the fact that 80% of North American Christians’ homes are facing some type of financial distress.  Another statistic states that a primary issue cited in 50% percent of those seeking divorce has to do with finances.  For most, they are simply drowning in a sea of overwhelming debt.

You have probably heard the definition for a credit card, right?  “It’s a tool that encourages you to buy things you can’t afford with money you don’t have to impress people you don’t like.”  At Christmas time, maybe that definition could go a litter farther; “Credit cards are also used to fulfill a sense of obligation or attempt to buy someone’s love.”  Ouch!

Jan and I just want to encourage you to be wise this Christmas.  Find ways to show your love through gifts that come from the size of your heart, not the size of your credit limit.  If the person who receives your gift of love is not satisfied, just continue to love and bless them from your heart, but please don’t allow the spirit of mammon or the force of shame to manipulate you into attempting to buy the love and acceptance of friends and family members.


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