Often I have a hard time keeping my eyes on God during the Christmas season and even on Christmas day.
It’s easy to get distracted by shopping and decorating and gifts and food-buying and preparation and the Christmas tree and and so many other trivial pursuits. I can get engrossed in watching “Christmas” shows on TV that take my mind away from what Christmas is really about.
The angel said after Jesus was born,
Glory to God in the highest… Luke 2:14 NIV
I want my life and the way I live it and the manner in which I celebrate Christmas to proclaim the same thing. So many times I fall short of this. Yet God in His mercy longs to show me how to give Him glory.
Included in my Bible reading recently was:
Not to us, O LORD, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness. Psalm 115:1
I looked up “glory” in the dictionary. It said, “worshipful praise, honor and thanksgiving (giving glory to God).”
That’s what I want to focus on this Christmas–giving glory to God. Yes, I appreciate the people in my life, and I want to bless them with gifts. But I want to keep my eyes on the greatest gift of all–Jesus.
Sometimes people around me encourage me to take my eyes off of the real meaning of Christmas. I can’t blame them, because as long as I’m on this earth there will be people who don’t care about giving God glory. Jesus certainly faced that. So I have to maintain a “giving God glory” focus despite the distractions of circumstances and people.
Some ways that help me stay focused on God and giving Him glory for His wonderful gift to me is singing or playing Christmas carols, lighting candles which symbolizes God’s light coming into a dark world, or sitting before the manger scenes I have in my home and contemplating the wonder of it all.
Sometimes a prayer of “Thank You, Lord for Your wonderful gift” is enough to get me back to the real celebration.
Also, at Christmas time I like to start reflecting on the past year and all God has done in my life. This year I’ve been thinking about and praising God for all He’s done in and through me since I met Jesus as my Savior in 1977. That goes along with Psalm 115:1 which says to give God glory because of His love and faithfulness.
And as far as the people who aren’t interested in giving God glory, He wants me reach out to them and offer them the gift of Jesus. Even if they say “no,” He wants me to love them even so, the way He loves each one of us.
He wants me to be a giver–not just gifts under the tree–but to give of my compassion and comfort and caring. It brings God glory when I love others the way He has loved me. Then one day they may notice and ask about this gift I have received.
At the Christmas eve service I attended earlier today, the pastor talked about letting our light shine for Christ. Jesus brought His light into my darkness–of depression, and bitterness, and negativity–which had me bound before I knew Him. I am a different person now because of His light, and I so want His light to shine through me.
I long to do to a much greater degree what the Word urges:
Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:16 NASB
I have received light through Jesus and by shining that light I give glory to God which in turn causes others to give Him glory.
The bottom line is He is worthy of all the glory and honor I can give Him–not only at Christmas but every day of my life. My prayer is that I may more and more live a life that glorifies Him.
What about You? Do You long to give God glory? Look to His Word and listen for the whisper of the Holy Spirit and you will discover how. May God be glorified in your heart and in your home this Christmas day and throughout the new year.