Isn't this photo just beautiful? Disneyland Paris, just like all the Disney theme parks, it is especially stunning during the winter / holiday/ solstice season. Happy... whatever you celebrate!
Seriously, have you noticed that Christmas can't even be celebrated in some places? I'm talking about in the good old U.S.A. and not just in communist and Muslim countries. In the school district in which we live, the students can celebrate Hanukkah, Kwanza, Diwali, and more. They just cannot celebrate Christmas- not even the secular one. God forbid (He hasn't) that they celebrate the real reason we have for the merriest Christmas ever- the coming of Jesus! That is Good News- the arrival of the One True King for the people He created.
You see, everyone responds differently to the Good News.
Around the time of Jesus’ birth, the people who lived in Bethlehem and its surrounding area knew that firsthand.
King Herod was fuming mad that the wise men had returned to their own country without returning to tell him the whereabouts of Jesus. Under the guise of wanting to worship him, Herod was relying on their information so he could kill the Christ Child. Herod was threatened and wanted no one else in control. When his original plan failed, every boy aged two and under was killed at the king’s command. What a huge price many paid because of one man’s ego, anger, and fear!
As Jesus grew up, and especially during his ministry, people responded with curiosity or disinterest or disdain in their own thoughts about him. Though time changes, human nature does not.
Today, just like back then, people still respond the same way as King Herod: the thought of giving up control of one’s own life to Someone Else will just not be done. So, Jesus is again responded to with curiosity, disinterest, or disdain.
Maybe even worse, He can be put “in his place”, especially by us folks who are religious or may have a faint interest in being spiritual. This could be because of religious tradition or because we have become too familiar with Him. Either way, when this happens, Jesus risks becoming an icon for us, removed from personal relationship with the very people he died for! Jesus died for an intimate relationship with each one of us- not so that He could become a corporate figurehead.
To me, the baby Jesus I place in that creche on the mantle is only a reminder of the God made man who died to give me eternal life and a living relationship with Him. This Christmas, I invite you to reconsider the Jesus who willingly gave up his life for you and rose from the dead, paying the price for the sins you have committed. We deserve Hell, but only through Him do we have a chance for life. All He asks in turn is that you give him your heart and control of your life. What a small price to pay for an eternity of peace and joy instead of condemnation and misery!
(Image copyright Love This Pic.)