Have you ever noticed how people try to do some type of humanitarian effort during the Christmas season? People flock to the soup kitchens to help serve a meal, participate in food drives, adopt a family from an angel tree or drop a few coins in the red bucket when prompted by the ringing of the bells as they walk out of the store. People, both Christian and non-Christian alike, tend to be more generous around the Christmas season. I’ve heard it referred to as the spirit of Christmas.
I can’t help but think if this outward act of caring for others is the spirit of Christmas, then isn’t it the spirit of Christ? And if it is the spirit of Christ, shouldn’t we be doing it every day, not just at Christmastime?
Jesus isn’t just a holiday figure like Santa Claus or Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. He is the God who was, and is, and is to come [Revelation 1:4]. The season of Christmas came about to celebrate Christ, not the other way around. If we are true followers of Christ, we should be looking for opportunities to be His hands and feet 365 days a year. After all, people need a hot meal on March 11th, just as much as they do on December 25th.
1 John 4:16 tells us “God is love.” Love never takes a day off. Jesus called us to be His disciples, demonstrate His love and care for His people [John 13:34; Mark 10:8]. He told us people would know we were His disciples by our love [John 13:35].
It is wonderful to see all of the acts of kindness that take place in the month of December, but what are you planning to do in the month of January? How are you going to demonstrate the love of Christ to your neighbors after the cookie tins have been washed and packed away until next year? What are you going to do with the excess clothing in your house you don’t really need? How are you going to budget your finances for the coming year? Will there be an envelope to pull from to help those in need?
In John 21 we read of Peter and Jesus taking a walk on the beach together. Three times Jesus asks Peter if he loves Him. Three times Peter answers yes. Three times Jesus tells Peter to take care of His sheep, His lambs. My question for you today is do you love Him?