In my flat, we have a small Christmas tree, some snowflakes in the windows and of course, advent calendars. Propped up against the window, underneath some snowflakes, we have three idly waiting to be opened every couple of days.
The countdown to Christmas has well and truly taken siege, the shops are packed with frantic mothers buying Christmas gifts, the decorations are up all over the place, and Watford has gotten right into the festivities. As have Soul Survivor and Explore; both boasting 12ft Christmas trees, baubles and fairy lights, mulled wine and carols taking place and Christmas gifs ideas coming out of their ears. We're in a church and the focus of course is Jesus' birth. But for everyone else, and even ourselves, sometimes the excitement has built a tainted picture of what Christmas is. We're writing Christmas lists, trying to out-shine our decorations to our next door neighbors, buying the best possible gift for someone who has everything and I'm sure you're wearing your Christmas jumper right now! Christmas is about giving and receiving right? Wrong, it's Jesus' birthday! Has anybody thought about what He'd like? What's on His Christmas list? Because I'm sure it's not an Xbox.
As Christians we should be celebrating Jesus, not ourselves. Our Christmas traditions should be different to others, we should be leaking the radiant love of God at Christmas; giving without expecting to receive, helping our neighbors put up their lights, inviting the old lady from across the road in for some mince pies and telling your family about Jesus. You love people until it's genuine.
This year, for me, I've grasped that. As a kid Christmas was always about presents and getting what I wanted, when I became a Christian it was about Jesus and getting what I wanted, but this year I feel differently; I've finally remembered, and really remembered it's Jesus' birthday. I want to be celebrating Him, not myself, I want to be worshipping Him and remembering that the birth of that little King, led to my sins being forgiven and eternal life!
Forget advent calendars, I'm counting down until eternity.