10 Commandments for Christmas (Part Two)

ChristmasCarols2How can we apply the 3rd and 4th Commandments to our busy American Christmas season? Let’s see.

Commandment 3: Don’t misuse God’s name

It’s easy to sing Christmas carols and not even notice what we are singing. The meaning of many of our carols is so full of the truth of God’s amazing gift to our world, and yet we often allow them to be like elevator music to us.

Truth is, it’s not just cursing that abuses His name. Many Christmas songs, sayings, and marketing methods ignore, belittle, or carelessly reflect this holy holiday season. These can misuse God’s name, too.

So when I give a Christmas greeting, I try to reflect an attitude of reverence and respect that He alone deserves. And when I listen to or sing a carol such as “Oh Holy Night” or “Away in the Manger”, I take a moment to bow my heart and worship the One who came that holy night. But here’s a warning: always carry a tissue. There have been times when I’ve come to tears in the middle of the mall as God has met me through the words of a carol or holiday song, and I suspect He may do the same with you.

Commandment 4: Keep the Sabbath Holy

When I was a child, it was so much easier to honor the Sabbath since the shops and activities were closed on Sundays and on Christmas. Today, things have changed, and it’s tempting to get your shopping done, go to a movie, or wash your car on a Sunday afternoon. It’s even easy to skip church because there’s a ball game, a practice, or some event that you don’t want to miss.

Yet we have the opportunity to teach our children what it means to keep the Sabbath—and Christmas—holy by choosing how we will order our days. I’ve learned that it’s as simple as scheduling—or not scheduling—events, chores, etc., on days other than Sundays. It’s tempting to sacrifice a family meal for a trip to the mall, but if we make it a priority to keep the Sabbath holy, our children and those around us, will see that holy moments matter in our every day lives.

 

 

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