Every year some of us get alarmed over the race to erase Christ from Christmas. Some of our complaints are legit while some are not.
For instance – Xmas. Obviously, someone removed Christ from the word Christmas and replaced Him with an X. So, who did it?
Maybe it was my Algebra teacher who as a rule would let X stand for the unknown; or maybe it was a lewd little man who hoped to drag the holiday into the world of X ratings or it could have been a Gen Xer who wanted to make Christmas about himself.
Actually, the anonymous culprit is over a thousand years old, for that is how long the church has been using an X to represent Christ – but it isn’t really an X.
The New Testament was written in Greek and the Greek word for Christ is Christos, but it looks like this “Χριστός.” Did you notice the X-like first letter? This is the letter chi which is pronounced key unless you are a frat boy.
The chi is an abbreviation of Christos and has been used reverently to represent Christ for many centuries.
The X in Christmas is not a snub to tradition but rather a nod to it. Keep in mind, it is still pronounced “Christmas.”
We Christians do get bent out of shape when our culture tries to take Christ out of Christmas. So maybe we should do our part to put Him back.
The apostle Paul tells us that we are ambassadors for Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:20) An ambassador is an agent of the highest rank who represents his/her superior. And we are therefore, empowered to represent Christ in Christmas. How?
– Your neighbor used to put up a legendary light display in the front yard each year. But his age and declining health have had its toll. Go over and raid his garage. Dust off the lights and recreate the Christmas joy in his yard for him and the neighborhood.
– You have a wonderful display of lights in your own yard – but is there anything there that points to Jesus? Anything? Many years ago, I designed and made a manger/cross display. It has been our Christmas centerpiece for decades now. My wife even makes me repair it every time a so-and-so bulb burns out. I do love it though. It’s a creative statement of why Christ was born.
– Some of your relationships are frayed and some forgotten. Take time this season to reconnect – to swallow your pride if you must. The conversation may begin like this, “I am wondering if I might have hurt you. Have I?”
– You may prefer to boycott the office party because of the craziness that goes on there. Represent Jesus. Attend! Let your fellow workers know that you love them and enjoy being with them. You can always graciously slip out later if things get wild.
– Christmas is an exceptionally lonely time for single people. Be Jesus to them by inviting them to your home for Christmas dinner. Bless them with a special gift and a hug. I have known singles that have gone for weeks at a time without experiencing the touch of another human being. There are few things that are more affirming than a hug.
– Right before you tear into the presents remind your family that we give to our daughters and sons, because God gave His Son. Open your Bible and read together about God’s gift (Luke 2:1-20) before they open theirs
– And lastly – don’t be so judgmental. It’s not the end of the world if you brother’s kids believe in Santa. And when the clerk at the store says, “Happy Holidays” you don’t have to snarl back “It’s Merry Christmas if you please.” You could just say, “the same to you!” According to Paul, the Lord expects you and me to be “peaceable, gentle, showing complete courtesy to all people.” Titus 3:2 NET Bible ®
Hey, I think we can put back more Christ back into the Season than the culture removes. So Merry Xmas to you!
A PRAYER: Lord may I seriously put back more Christ this Season than the culture removes