This past Sunday was the first week of Advent. Advent is that period of time during which we are to prepare ourselves for Christmas and the coming of Christ.
We aren’t preparing for the Christmas that is celebrated in malls and public spaces which focuses on Santa and winter festivities. Rather, we focus on the Christmas of history – the one that celebrates the coming of the Lord Jesus in human flesh to redeem us from our sins.
I thought that over the next few weeks, I would offer some Christmas verses that perhaps we don’t always think about but nonetheless describe what happened at Christmas.
Here’s one of my favourites from Philippians 2:5-8 as found in The Message: “Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn’t think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn’t claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death—and the worst kind of death at that—a crucifixion.”
The Apostle Paul writes about the incarnation, when God himself stepped into human flesh. In coming to earth, Christ set aside the advantages and privileges of his deity in order to become a servant to all. His selflessness is an example to all of us.
During this Christmas season, let’s remind ourselves that Christmas is not about having warm feelings and enjoying hot chocolate but rather giving of ourselves for others. Let’s follow the example of Jesus.