Summary: In part three of Discover the REAL Christmas we discover ADORE-ation. Christmas is about our worship and adoration of Jesus Christ. It took on different forms for each of the characters of Christmas.
Song: We wish you a Merry Christmas...
This week I started the third of four Christmas books that I will be reading this year. None of them are of any consequence, just fun little books to fill in the gaps between the study books I’m reading and other stuff that I’m doing. My favorite so far is Mary Higgins Clark, The Christmas Thief. But, I digress.
The third book I’m reading is Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Christmas Collection. (Don’t make fun of me, I love those books!).
The reason I bring that up has everything to do with the song we just sang...We Wish You a Merry Christmas.
The first article in the book, The Scrooge Who Saved Christmas, tells the story of the origins of Charles Dicken’s book, A Christmas Carol. The author of the article wrote that most people did little to celebrate Christmas by the mid-17th century. It was that little book that got people to celebrating again. And, writes the author of the article, it was Dickens himself who originated the phrase, Merry Christmas.
“We wishing you a Merry Christmas” apparently isn’t that old of a thing after all, about 160 years, if that.
Merry Christmas. Isn’t it something how we go around wishing each other a Merry Christmas?
Christmas we get...a mass or church service, a time to honor Christ, thus Christ’s Mass or Christmas.
Merry is an interesting word that literally means “short or brief” as in a short time of delight or festivity.
So in actually when we wish someone a Merry Christmas we are really telling them to hurry up and get to church, I guess... (maybe not).
We Wish You a Merry Christmas. We love to wish people a Merry Christmas.
I think if we’re honest with ourselves though,, we do a lot of wishing this time of year that has more to do with us than anything that really involves Christ!
Isn’t it something that we spend all of this time, money, and energy wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and so little time wishing Jesus a Happy Birthday? It is a celebration of Jesus’ birth.
If we’re going to discover the REAL Christmas we probably need to make sure that celebrating the REAL Christ is in there somewhere. (First priority wouldn’t be too far off.)
We probably could stand to spend a little less time wishing and a lot more time ADORING.
The more we adore the less wishing we would need to do.
Here’s a good motto: AS YOU ADORE MORE, YOU WILL FIND YOURSELF WISHING FOR LESS.
ADORE MORE – WISH LESS! The more you worship the less the less you will find yourself wishing – especially for things you really don’t need.
Wishing is all about hoping, wanting – ADOREation, worship, is about giving. You can’t honestly adore without giving. ADOREation is giving focus.
Just ask Terrie, she loves it when I adore her. She loves it when I focus on her. Come to think of it, I love it when she adores me! I know she does! That’s a great feeling...being adored!
In the REAL Christmas story there is a lot of ADOREation going on.
The Gospel of Matthew tells us that the Magi traveled from the East for the sole purpose of worshipping, adoring, the New Born King (Matthew 2:2).
But let’s stop here for a second...ADOREation?...Worship?
The rest of this talk is going to be about singing and going to church, isn’t it? That’s worship, right? I mean, we have a worship team...that sings. We come to Sunday Morning Worship...at church. Sunday morning is when I worship. That’s it...right?
There’s a reason we use the word ADOREation here. Not just because it fits the REAL acrostic, but because ADOREation helps us understand worship.
Jesus said this about worship some thirty-plus years after his birth: “For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:24)
The two elements that are key to worship are spirit and truth. In short that means that worship begins with our spirit – our inner being, our hearts and souls. Then, worship must always be based on what is truth.
It probably wasn’t a coincidence – it actually happens more often than I like to admit – but while I was doing a final edit on this talk I overheard five men conversing about truth. One guy had the Bible all figured out – it supposedly had a truth disclaimer at the end. Another one talked about how you had to be careful because there were obviously parts of the Bible that were God’s words. Another talked about “His Bible”...the tragedy was that all five were worshipping mistruths. Their perceptions in reality were not true.
I so much wanted to interrupt their conversation and encourage all of them to simply read the Bible since it was somewhat obvious that none of them really new a whole lot about it. It’s amazing how things change when you read God’s Word for yourself!