God used a decades-old decoration to shine His light into my heart and into our Christmas celebration.
After my husband affixed our lighted three-feet-tall Christmas star to the front of the house, he said, “Instead of adding white lights all the way across the shrubbery this year, I think I’ll only put them on the corner bushes. The star shines brighter when it’s the only light at the center of the house.”
His observation led my thoughts to the star over the manger and a question. Am I allowing the light of Christ Jesus to shine brightly as I celebrate Christmas, or are the competing “lights” of activity in my life interfering with His glow?
I turned to Matthew, chapter two, and read the familiar account of the original Christmas star. The magi journeyed to Jerusalem, then to Bethlehem by following a divine GPS—the light of a brilliant star. Unhindered, the heavenly light moved ahead of them through the night sky, then stopped above the house where Mary and Joseph lodged.
When the visitors saw the Christ Child, they “fell down and worshiped Him,” then presented kingly gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh (Matthew 2:11 NASB).
Like the magi, we can rejoice at the birth of the Savior, worship Him, and give gifts to honor Him. But first, let’s fix our gaze on the Lord as firmly as the ancient travelers did, and ensure that no other “lights” or distractions divert our attention and overshadow His light.
Let’s ask ourselves the following questions to help us keep our gaze on the Lord so that His light shines forth from our celebration.
- Am I enjoying His presence while I purchase and wrap presents?
- Am I feasting on His Word before I plan dinner for family and baked goods for neighbors?
- Am I listening for His voice while I enjoy the sounds of the season?
- Am I spending more time talking with God than I spend chatting about my to-do list?
- Am I allowing the love of Jesus to shine to others instead of letting my expectations hinder relationships?
- Who will see the light of Christ shining from my life this Christmas season?
Now that I’ve pondered these questions, my heart is refocused, and my to-do list is shorter. (Confession: If filling the calendar were an Olympic sport, I’d win a gold medal. Activity can quickly consume my thoughts and divert my attention.) Although this month will be busy still, we’ll enjoy God’s presence and His peace more as we focus on Him.
Like the Christmas star led the magi to the manger, the Light of the World draws us to accept God’s eternal gift of salvation in Christ. Once we surrender our lives to Jesus, He produces joy and peace that shine from our hearts as the Christmas star shone from the heavens. We can tell others about the light of hope that led us to Him and the difference He makes in our daily lives.
Like the Christmas star led the magi to the manger, the Light of the World draws us to accept God’s eternal gift of salvation in Christ. Click To Tweet
Like the magi, believers have much to celebrate—the presence of our living Lord. In addition to prayer, Bible study, and worship, we can also honor Him when we sing, bake, shop, give gifts, laugh, and enjoy family and friends.
The translucent Christmas star on the front of our house takes center stage and shines brightly without the competition of other lights. May the light of Christ take center stage in our hearts and shine brightly as we celebrate His birth.
May the light of Christ take center stage in our hearts and shine brightly as we celebrate His birth. Click To Tweet
Please share your thoughts on ways to honor Jesus as we celebrate His birth and look forward to His sure return. And as you share them, think about our participation in all things Christmas. The following verses will help us keep our gaze on the Lord:
Whatever you do in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.Colossians 3:17 NASB
Your light must shine before people in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.Matthew 5:16 NASB
Here’s an excellent post by my friend, Sylvia Schroeder. Her descriptions of the magi presenting gifts led me to worship. https://sylviaschroeder.com/my-christmas-gift-bought-with-a-childs-heart/