I didn't meet my goal to finish shopping for gifts by December 1, but for the most part, my list is complete minus a few little stocking stuffers, and my Christmas baking only has two items to go. But checking off my gift list and baking goodies isn't what put Christmas in my heart.
The real Christmas spirit came to me this year at my final church council meeting on the 27th of November. I completely forgot it was my turn to offer the devotion at the beginning of the meeting so nothing was prepared, but the first thing that popped into my head was, of course, Christmas. (As I warned fellow council members, I'm sharing a brief portion of those thoughts now in this blog.)
Hebrews 10:24 − "Let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds" is perhaps my favorite Bible verse. To me, it epitomizes what Jesus commanded us to do when he said, "Love one another." − John 13:34 (NIV) Mankind does that no better than at Christmastime.
This is the season when even non-Christians get into the spirit of giving and caring, but we of faith should keep that spirit year round. Showing love to our fellowman, I think, gives us a taste of God's love for us. When we give without restraint, but instead with compassion and the joy of sharing our blessings, we invoke a higher sense. For just a short time, we can feel the power and opportunity to make this world a better place. Wouldn't it be wonderful to keep Christmas in our hearts everyday?