NINE ERRORS PEOPLE MAKE AT CHRISTMAS
By Josh Chigorimbo, 2017
And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Matthew 2:11
The wise men in our text responded to the first “Christmas” wisely indeed. So should we. However, nowadays believers and sinners alike make terrible mistakes regarding this holy event. In this article we consider nine errors we all run the risk of committing during the festive season of every year.
1. CRAVING PRESENTS RATHER THAN CHRIST’S PRESENCE: Our preoccupation with exchanging material gifts robs us of the opportunity to experience the life-changing presence of God through authentic worship. Note that penitents of the first Christmas came to GIVE not to receive.
2. HALLOWING FAIRIES RATHER THAN THE FATHER: It is amazing how today’s believers prefer to dwell on superstitions and fables surrounding the Christ-event than on the truth. Yet Jesus teaches that God is on the hunt for people who know how to worship the Father in Spirit and Truth.
3. READING HOROSCOPE RATHER THAN SCRIPTURE: Many saints and sinners alike have not learned the joy that comes from studying the Word of God. Seeking answers in horoscopes and other dodgy sources, denies many the sure hope that only God can give. In this season and beyond, let us refuse to be led astray by anything cultic. God’s plans for you are revealed in His Word and by His Spirit. Trust Him.
4. INVITING FRIENDS AND FAMILY TO FUN THAN TO FAITH: To many revellers in our hedonistic society, Christmas is all about fun, food, and games. But the real reason for the season tends to be relegated to the background. Let us remember that it’s all about faith not fun. There is no better time than now to encourage our friends and family to seek the Lord while He may be found.
5. SPENDING SEED RECKLESSLY THAN SOWING WISELY: In this consumerism driven climate, we all run the risk of overspending. Let’s beware, dear friends. Remember that we must not consume more than we create. Our outgo must not outstrip our income. When that happens, we begin to slide into the grip of the servitude of debt. Rather we must save, invest, sow and spend prudently.
6. TREATING THE POOR WITH CONTEMPT RATHER THAN WITH COMPASSION: It’s easy for those of us who are well to do to think the less privileged are that way because of laziness or stupidity. We can easily become callous to the plight of the needy. In this season, as we enjoy the blessings we have received, let us spare a thought for the disadvantaged.
7. MIXING PAGANISM WITH CHRISTIANITY: Sadly, Christmas is one of those Christian events that are riddled with a lot of pagan symbols and rituals. As a result, the true meaning of the Incarnation is obscured and buried under an avalanche of myths and legends. So earnest seekers have a tough time deciphering the true message. And earnest believers have a tough time sanitising this sacred season. But try we must!
8. AVOIDING THE CENTRALITY OF CHRIST: Somehow Santa Claus, turkeys and Christmas trees hog the whole limelight during this holy season while the one whose “birthday” we celebrate (Jesus) hardly gets a mention. Some even substitute the Christ of Christmas with an X—unknowingly replacing the heart of the season with a symbol denoting an unknown quantity.
9. SUBSTITUTING RITUALS FOR RELATIONSHIP: It is very easy for church folks to settle for rituals instead of enjoying a real relationship with the King of Kings. It’s quite easy for Christians to become nominal believers, whose faith is purely traditional and void of real meaning, joy and impact. That’s one error we all must avoid this Christmas. Let get to really know and worship Christ the Lord.
©Josh Chigorimbo 2017