Sunday, December 23, 2012

What happened to joy and peace of Christmas?

There are many reasons to relish the Christmas season: the celebration of our Savior’s birth, the wonderful holiday music, special events at church, gathering together with family and friends. The food. The gifts. The memories.

“Glory to God in the highest and peace on earth.”

But there is more to the holiday season than singing carols by the fire, retelling the Christmas story and sharing meals with loved ones. Increasingly, it seems, this is a stressful time for many people, the hustle and bustle, lofty expectations and added expense to already strained budgets.

A surveyed conducted with 1,000 Americans across a broad demographic stated that 45 % said the holiday season brings so much financial stress, they would prefer to skip it altogether. Almost half of the survey’s respondents said their level of stress is high or extremely high.

No wonder for many people the Christmas season has become more stress than joy, more burden than celebration.

Of course, there is a solution to taking the stress out of Christmas – by making Christ the center of it. We have already received the greatest gift anyone could ever get, without even driving to the mall: unconditional love.

We celebrate this season as a reminder of God's gift to us. Jesus was not born in an ornate palace surrounded by servants; He was born in a stable, clothed with rags, laid in a feeding trough.

Christmas was never meant to be about gifts under the tree, gifts that will never last. It is a season to remember God’s love and to share that with others: family, friends, even strangers.

May your home be filled with joy and peace this Christmas season, whether or not it is overflowing with wrapped boxes from the mall. 

---excerpt from a story by Glenn Hannigan, editor of the N. GA Advocate

God Is Still In Control!

Miss Lladale Carey
Web Content Producer

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