Do You Celebrate Christmas?

“Honey,” I said to my wife, “I spoke with pastor Mark and he said they have a place for a security guard. He said they would pay him a dollar a day.” Of course, I was telling my wife what I had said to pastor Mark IN A DREAM which happened during the last few hours as I slept!

She chuckled. And I wondered, what’s the message? I had had too many dreams that meant something to simply turn a blind eye to this dream. After all, pastor Mark was the senior pastor of our church. Right away, you could see a spiritual connection. But what was this thing about being a security guard? And what about the payment of a dollar a day?

Then I remembered that the day before, I had met a young man of about 23 years, at the swimming pool. The Lord had graciously opened up a conversation as I had searched for a way to reach him with the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. It had all begun with that one simple sentence,

“So, do you celebrate Christmas?”

The Lord took that one simple sentence (an “offering” to God, you might say) and used it to open the conversation right up! Soon, the man was asking me what Christmas was all about. And I told him.

He had originally asked me about the ORIGINS of Christmas. So I told him! Christmas, I explained to him, was originally a pagan celebration. But Christians had redeemed it and turned it into a Christian celebration.

And that really, in fact, is what Christ has done to all of us, too, who are called by his name and who are born again by his Spirit. Christ has redeemed us. We used to be pagans (unbelievers) but God has taken us and turned us around! Hallelujah!

Thus, the next time someone comes up to you and says, “You should not be celebrating Christmas, because it came from a pagan celebration,” you can say to them, “That’s okay! I used to be a pagan, too, and God took me and CHANGED me and made me his child! I do not worship as a pagan – it is CHRIST that I worship at Christmas time!”

There is, of course, no direct command in the Bible telling us to worship Christ at Christmas time only! Instead, the Scriptures tell us we are to offer ourselves as a living sacrifice to God! That’s something we are to do EVERY DAY OF THE YEAR! But Christmas time is special, in that it gives us a special opportunity to “focus in” on Christ and make him known in a more special way to those around us. Christmas time is also a wonderful time to bless your family, to get together, to meet people — these are ALL THINGS that the Bible says are GOOD and ACCEPTABLE in God’s sight!

Christmas, then, is an OPPORTUNITY to serve the Lord in a very practical manner, sharing his love to others in ways that you might not be able to do otherwise. For example, take the man at the swimming pool. Had it not been for the topic of Christmas, I would not have been able to share with him like that.

Of course, I did not stop there. I went on to explain to him what Christmas means for Christians, and what Jesus did for us in dying for us on the cross. Do you think something like that had any difference? I can assure you, it did! For soon, right there in front of numerous other people at the swimming pool, the man was allowing me to lay hands on his damaged knee, and pray for his healing! And he had faith, too! As soon as I stopped praying, he bent his knee to see if anything had changed! And he smiled!

I told him, “God works in many ways when we pray. Sometimes we pray, and we don’t feel anything, and yet God has still done something. The man was encouraged and we entered into continued discussion. All of this because of one simple question,

“So, do you celebrate Christmas?”

Soon, the man was sharing with me deeper things still. He had not been allowed to stay with his own parents, because he had refused to take medication that had made him dizzy and unable to properly sleep and dream he said! The medication had interfered with his dreams, and yet his father had said, “Unless you take it, you cannot stay in this house!” So at a young age, he left the house and had lived at the YMCA and other locations. Friends, this was a man for whom Jesus died and cared deeply! Jesus ESPECIALLY identified with the hurting, and the lonely, and the afflicted! Jesus LOVED this man! And here I was having the wonderful opportunity of sharing with him, from my heart, all about the Lord Jesus Christ, and he was listening, giving me his full, undivided, attention, all of because that one, very simple question,

“So, do you celebrate Christmas?”

The man was on disability, because of his knee. But what if God healed it to the point where he no longer needed to be on disability, I asked him. “What would you like to do? Do you have a trade? Are you into music? Are you artistic? Or are you a techie?”

The man responded, “I would like to be security guard.”

I told him, “That’s wonderful. If God has called you to be a security guard, then I’m sure you would be a very fine one. You know, you can meet a lot of people as a security guard.”

He said, “Yes, I know.” The man also shared his motives for wanting to be a security guard, and they were very noble. He said, “I would like to be able to protect people.”

I said, “You never know, if you do well at it, you might be able to be a security guard for the prime minister of Canada,” to which he agreed. And why not? With God, ALL THINGS WERE POSSIBLE!

And, there, of course, was the “tie-in” with pastor Mark and my dream that morning, for pastor Mark, in the dream, had said they (the church) had a PLACE for a security guard and they would PAY him a dollar a day. What was that all about? Well, in his role as a pastor, pastor Mark, the shepherd, represents Jesus, who is the Shepherd of all shepherds. The dream, then, was about how Jesus WANTED this man, who had an ambition to be a security guard, in HIS church! Once you caught on to that, the REST was simple to figure out! In so doing, this man would be REWARDED EVERY SINGLE DAY OF HIS LIFE! That was what the “dollar a day” was all about. That, of course, is entirely consistent with what the Scriptures teach, about us, as Christians, being blessed. We are ETERNALLY blessed, meaning every single day of our lives!

And that, friends, is what it means to another to invite him or her into the kingdom of God. We are God’s “hands and feet” in this regard. It is up to us to open our mouths and let others know about this great and wonderful God that we serve. This Christmas season, it all just might begin with the simple question,

“So, do you celebrate Christmas?”

By the way, do you? I encourage you to, and to invite one or more people over, as well, with whom you can share the blessing. Make sure to include some people who cannot pay you back, as well! Otherwise, Jesus said, you have no reward!

Have a very merry Christmas this Christmas season.

What an awesome God we serve!