GUEST POST: Pastoral Intern Carter Whyte
This week we began our “Christmas at the Movies” series – using classic Christmas movies to help shed new light on Jesus’ coming to earth. The enjoyable viewing of Home Alone served two purposes for this first message in the series: it taught us about our forgetfulness, and it forced us to put the message into action by having fun.
Just like Kevin’s parents forgot him at home when they went away for Christmas, oftentimes Christians forget something very important when we enter this holiday season: Joy!
We read in Luke 2 that when an angel announced Jesus’ birth to nearby shepherds, the angel proclaimed, “I bring you good news that will be great joy to all people.”
How often do we celebrate because of Jesus?
Sometimes Christians become fun-suckers, boring, and somber. We may try to rationalize these attitudes by saying that being serious and focused are important because we have a mission to complete and our days are numbered. But think: If the good news is supposed to bring joy into our lives, can we possibly spread the message of this good news without bringing joy along?
We know that joy is good! Laughter refreshes us! Doing fun things relieves us of the worries we have been carrying around! None of us want to go to work every day when there is absolutely nothing pleasurable about it.
There is a time for sorrow, and mourning, and self-reflection. But there is also a time for joy, and shouting, and self-expression! And Christmas is that kind of time!
Christian maturity should lead to more joy, as a result of a deeper connection with the Spirit that produces joy, and the Jesus that brings joy to the world! So let’s be mature this Christmas and let our lives be filled with joy because of Jesus.
- With still a few weeks until Christmas, why not consider adding in some extra celebrations with your family and the people around you?
- Invite people from work over to have a fondue dinner!
- Do something new and exciting with your spouse!
- Add something new to a traditional Christmas dinner – invite your family into a sing-along, or invite somebody new along! (Or write a poem!)
- Join in with your kids when they are silly, or build a gingerbread house with them this Sunday for the competition in Plattsville!
Don’t forget to have joy and spread joy to others this Christmas!
Big Idea: Don’t forget to bring joy with you this Christmas.
- Sometimes it’s easy to forget the most important things
- “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people”
- God is about Joy, and the instigator of Joy
- You don’t win points by being more conservative than God
- Don’t forget to have fun this Christmas.
Adult Discussion Questions:
What stuck out to you from the sermon? What was challenging to you? What was new? What was funny? When have you forgotten something important? What brings you joy at Christmas? How can you spread joy? How can you have fun? What can you do today to bring joy to your family?
Discussion Questions / Responses for Young Families
Ask your kids what is most fun thing to do at Christmas. Then go do it.
Challenge for the Week: To go have fun!