Dec 24, 2007

a christ-mas list

So perhaps you already know that December 25 isn't officially Jesus' birthday but rather the day we officially choose to recognize it. Sure, Constantine snagged the date from pagans to redeem and amplify its sacredness... but we remember not the "when" but the "Who" - that God came near... and still does.

To help draw attention to this, we showed this video in our gathering yesterday...

Nonetheless, I wonder if Jesus were to get to present us with a "wish list" for His birthday what that might look like...

If you want to give Me a present in remembrance of My birth, here is my wish list. Choose something from it.

1. Instead of writing protest letters objecting to the way My birthday is being celebrated, write letters of love and hope to soldiers away from home. They are terribly afraid and lonely this time of year. I know, they tell Me all the time.

2. Instead of worry about movies Christians shouldn't visit, visit someone in a nursing home. You don't have to know them personally. They just need to know that someone cares about them.

3. Instead of writing the President to complain about the way he talks and acts, why don't you write and tell him that you'll be praying for him and his family this year. Then follow up. It will be nice hearing from you again.

4. Instead of giving your children a lot of gifts you can't afford and they don't need, spend time with them. Tell them the story of My birth, and why I came to live with you down here. Hold them in your arms and remind them that I love them.

5. Instead of remembering a hurt from someone, forgive that person in such a way that is only possible through Me. And by the way, all things are possible through Me.

6. Instead of elbowing your way to the front of the line, give someone your place. The next time you see a great parking space, pass it up as an act of service no one will ever know about except Me.

7. Instead of nit picking about what the retailer in your town calls the holiday, be patient with the people who work there. Give them a warm smile and a kind word... even if they aren't allowed to wish you a"Merry Christmas" that doesn't keep you from wishing them one through your actions, and then your words.

8. Instead of letting your neighbors become strangers as it gets colder, decide to bring them cookies as a way to simply say hello.

9. Instead of ignoring the Salvation Army bell ringer, plan on how much money you won't spend as you walk into the store so you can give it on the way out. And by the way, they always need more bell ringers.

10. Finally if you want to make a statement aboutyour belief in and loyalty to Me, then behave like Me in all the redemptive ways you can. It's up to Me to separate the sheep from the goats, and up to you make it easier for there to be more sheep. Don't do things in secret that you wouldn't do in My presence, because I'm there anyway. Let people know by your actions that you are one of Mine.

And by the way - I am God and can take care of Myself. Just love Me and do what I have told you to do... I'll take care of all the rest. Check out the list above and get to work - time is short. I'll help you, but the ball is now in your court. And do have a most blessed Christmas with all those whom you love.

Ya yhink?


Anonymous said...

Sooo this kind of has to do with Christmas...& Family Force 5! d: My Mom & Dad told me you didn't care for them & I thought that maybe this would change your mind!
Merry Christmas to you & your family! :)

Tony Myles said...

Thanks, Ashley! I did check out the video and while it has some musical wizardry to it I had a hard time stomaching the bad taste in visuals... keep in mind, this comes from a guy who enjoys clever videos. It's not that I don't like FF5 - it's that they market themselves as a Christian band and yet typically come across as a PG version of Kid Rock. If that's their goal, cool... if it's to point people to Christ, I'm still waiting to be pointed beyond a head nod.

But hey... I'm keeping an open mind. I've seen them in concert twice, after all.

Awareness said...

Hi Tony

I found you through Robert's blog tonight. :)

I love this list.......may we all strive to do our part to fulfill these gifts to bestow on Jesus. We have such a tendancy to burn out our energies doing the opposite to what we should be focusing on..........if we just added a little tenderness and unconditional love into the mix of humanity, think of the possibilities.

Merry Christmas to you. I will visit again.....and hope you will visit my site.


Anonymous said...

sometimes in the midst of Christian thought clutter - like why postmodern christians act a certain way or the true origins and purpose behind the liturgical year and birth of Christ and how to celebrate it "right"-

... i hear God giving the same answer to all the concerns.

you said it in more words (beautiful too)...