Kingsport, Tennessee – Its two day’s before Christmas and all through my house, little feet are running and loud voices are followed with shouts. The boys are all home, not snug in their beds, but hanging around and watching me spend all my bread. Little eyes are peering at the evergreens so bright, what could this all mean to a child so full of delight?
Today’s Christmas customs dates back through the ages. Evergreen branches were used to symbolize life in ancient solstice festivals, as they stayed green in winter. This tradition was absorbed by Christians, who interpreted the evergreens as the Paradise tree and began decorating them with apples. The candles and lights associated with Christmas, meant to symbolize guiding beacons for the Christ child, may have evolved from the Yule log, which was lit to entice the Sun to return as part of the (Yule) festival in pagan Scandinavia.
This customs of evergreens, lights and gift giving has evolved over the generations as much as the gifts themselves. As I write this article, I await my new smart phone from Verizon, a gift I purchased for myself for Christmas (Hey! I’ve been good). Families have changed and the economy has certainly changed. This nation has different customs in the north, south, east and west. Some celebrate by doing for others and giving back to the community. Some celebrate with family and some celebrate alone in distant lands with brothers in arms so we can remain free.
As customs change and generations change, one thing stays the same and it’s the true meaning of Christmas. It’s about a child born to a poor couple in a stable some two thousand years ago. It’s not about me or you and not about my smart phone, it’s about this child who came as the savior of the world and died for us. It’s about love, forgiveness and eternal life in Christ Jesus.
This is the true meaning of the Christmas Holiday, its all about the child. “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” KJV- Isaiah 9:6
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