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Reason for the Season

by Sonny Childs

It was Thanksgiving morning. We were all very excited about the upcoming feast and we hurried through our morning routine. Mornings at our house are a lot like traveling down an interstate. Since we have only one small bathroom in our upstairs attic apartment, members of the family tend to get out of bed as the bathroom lane opens up.

On special days, the roadway can get quite congested and that was the case on this important holiday. Each of us were trying to merge onto the bathroom interstate more rapidly than usual and there was a real risk of collision. Trying to keep the festive spirit more festive than feisty, I greeted each family member with a happy smile and a hearty, “Happy Turkey Day!” Just call me the “Happy Holiday Bathroom Interstate Traffic Cop”!

Well, to me it seemed like the perfect greeting. Just a simple little phrase, “Happy Turkey Day!,” and the number of incidences of road rage dropped significantly. Am I good or what?

Later that morning, my six-year-old, who has a definite gift for critical communication, approached me with a concern. It seems that the brilliance of the Happy Holiday Traffic Cop was not as brilliant as he had hoped. My phrase “Happy Turkey Day!” had created quite a point of conflict in the mind of my little boy and, like making a citizen’s arrest, he had determined to put the matter behind bars. “Dad,” said Gabriel in a tone similar to the one policemen use to read a criminal his rights, “Dad, the point of Thanksgiving isn’t so you can have lunch, it’s so you can give thanks!”

Whoa, such wisdom from such a little guy!....

It was just about two weeks before Christmas. I had just awakened from a very pleasant Saturday afternoon nap and the makings of a poem kept rattling around in my head. Maybe it was due to guilt that had oozed over into my sleepy subconscious or maybe it was just a traffic cop who had learned his lesson. Either way Gabriel’s words had impacted me and the following poem was the result.

Reason for the Season
It’s Christmas in the air, Can you tell it?
It’s turkey on the stove, Can you smell it?

Colored lights everywhere, Can you see ‘em?
Santa stuck on the roof, Will you free him?

Presents wrapped ‘neath the tree, Will you get one?
Mistletoe, pretty girls, Have you met one?

Festive songs on the wind, Will you sing them?
Silver bells on the tree, Will you ring them?

Manger scene in the snow, Are you sighing?
Baby God in a barn, Are you crying?

Being born meant the cross And He knew it.
Keeping Christ in the day, Will you do it?

This season, remember the reason. Don’t let Santa Claus, Christmas trees and wrapping paper rob God of the focus He deserves.

Christ could not die unless He was born.
There could not be a cross until there was a manger.
Jesus was born so He could die.
Jesus died so you could be born.
Celebrate the reason for the season!

[The above was Sonny’s Thanksgiving Day / Christmas Devotional from 2008, reprinted with his permission.]

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If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

Romans 14:8