Merry Christmas Season to all. For us parents, this is a magical holiday. The lights, tree, presents and all the hype makes things fun. Depending on how old your daughter is, the “magical” quotient will vary. For those of you with a daughter in the 3-8 age range, Christmas is on steroids. Have fun with it. My kids are 21 & 25 so we have left the truly magical zone.
When Brittany was in the perfect zone for maximum Christmas fun, she opened a gift which elicited a response we still laugh about today. She wanted an “Easy Bake Oven” more than anything else, so of course we got one. When she opened it up and recognized what it was, she exclaimed in the most excited, 5 year old enthusiastic voice imaginable…. “EASY…. BAKE… OVEN!” with her face lit up with emotion. As she ripped open the paper she could hardly contain herself. It was one of those truly magical Christmas moments that we have all enjoyed.
My Christmas wish and challenge for you this year is to pause and re calibrate to the real purpose of Christmas. Imagine going to a birthday party and passing presents around to all the guests and not actually giving one to the one whose birthday it is. That would seem weird and inappropriate. Yet, that is basically what we do every year. We get time off of work, decorate the house and buy lots of presents all in honor of someone’s birthday. Then, at the crescendo of the holiday, we often pass presents around to one another and ignore the one whose birthday it is.
Let me challenge you to pause with your family, and in some meaningful way, honor Jesus on Christmas. It might sound a bit rudimentary, but I know it is an exercise that is often overlooked. Find a way to say “Happy Birthday” to Jesus. Through the years, we have done it lots of different ways. Many years, my wife made a birthday cake for Jesus. We sang “Happy Birthday” and blew out candles. Often times, we paused to read the Christmas story out of the bible. When the kids were little, we made sure to pause before we opened presents and reminded them what Christmas was actually all about. We did Santa when they were little and we did Jesus always.
I think the best present you could give Jesus this year on His birthday is to pause and meaningfully recognize him at Christmas with your family. It will be a great gift to your daughter to see her Daddy honoring Jesus. And it will be a great gift to Jesus for Him to see you honor Him as well. I can just imagine Jesus responding with the child like enthusiasm that my Brittany did for her Easy Bake Oven at the sight of you giving Him the gift of your honor, respect and recognition this Christmas.
Today’s Take Away: Make sure you stop and, in some way, say “happy birthday to Jesus” with your kids this Christmas season. It could be a new tradition.
There is still time to get some great last minute Christmas gifts for the Dads in your life! See below!