Christmas symbol: the BELL. Every good shepherd places a 🔔 on each of his flock so that if one should stray or become lost, the shepherd can quickly locate and rescue that endangered one.
Christmas symbol: Lighted village houses. When someone accepts what Jesus did on the cross and asks Him to save them, His Holy Spirit comes into them and He makes that person His home, filling them with His light. JESUS, the light of the world!
Christmas symbol: the color GREEN. As every good Irish lass knows, “green” means eternity. It is predominate at Christmas as a reminder that we are celebrating the moment that Christ stepped out of eternity into the world to make eternity available to all who willingly welcome Him into their hearts.
Christmas symbol: SNOW. Beautiful, white, pure. Just as as fresh snow blankets the earth, covering all that is ugly and dirty and making it pristine and beautiful, so when we welcome Christ into our hearts, He covers all that makes us ugly and dirty with His righteousness. (Rev. 19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.)
Christmas symbol: RED — Not just any old red, but the brilliant crimson red of blood that is full of oxygen, full of life! The blood that Jesus shed, that life-giving flow, which covers all of our sin, and makes us – you got it! — WHITE as SNOW!
Christmas symbol: WREATH – We see them everywhere, each one slightly different. Some covered in bows, or filled with pinecones, others lit with lights. Each one is a reminder of a different kind of wreath – one that was turned on its side and used as a crown – a crown of thorns. A reminder of the kind of love that stepped into the world and endured mockery, shame and disgrace – all for us!
Christmas symbol: TINSEL – It shimmers and hangs whimsically upon the tree, catching and reflecting light like a hundred tiny prisms, flowing down the tree like a waterfall on a brilliant, sunny day. If we let our eyes drift upward we will encounter the star perched ignominiously o the tree top – the star that is a remembrance of the one that hung over a stable. And the tinsel – it mirrors the light beams that shown down from the star on that blessed night – beams of light that drew wise men to Him.
Christmas symbol: RIBBON — brightly colored ribbon, all color shades and hues, used to make bows and to wrap presents. Ribbon that looks lovely when made into ornament hangers or gracefully adorning trees and tables, windows and doors. Ribbon — strong, cutting, biting, binding cords, unable to be broken. Ribbon — a reminder of the bonds that held Jesus while Roman soldiers ripped the flesh off of His body with a cat o’ nine tails, leaving ‘ribbons’ of flesh hanging off of His body and exposing the stripes of bone which were His rib cage. Ribbon — a reminder that He became bound so that we could be free, all because He loves us.
Christmas symbol: WRAPPING PAPER – We use it to hide the surprise inside – the gift we have so lovingly selected. The paper is bright and festive, creating decorations out of boxes. Wrapping paper, a subtle but glorious reminder of the priceless gift that lay in a manger; the gift Mary so lovingly wrapped in swaddling clothes. The gift that contained peace between God and man, and good will toward all mankind from the God who created the heavens and the earth. His peace with us….His goodwill toward us – salvation, wrapped in grayish-beige linen.
Christmas symbol: HOPE — Christmas is a season of Hope. You can see it in the faces of children looking up at Santa. It’s in holiday movies about falling in love or the ones about reuniting families. These all sound superficial in light of the birth of Christ, but in reality they mirror what is the true hope of Christmas: that we will be loved; that we will be part of a family; that our most secret dreams will come true. The Christ child came to make the substance of our hopes into possibilities. We accept him and become part of the largest family imaginable and recipient of the greatest love and passion ever to be experienced. HOPE- – because dreams still come true!
Christmas symbol: ORNAMENTS — so beautiful, in every size, shape, color and texture, placed lovingly upon our trees — each one chosen to enhance the beauty of the tree. In Biblical times, a bride was adorned with ornaments, each one chosen to enhance her beauty. And the bridegroom’s chest swelled with pride as he gazed upon his cherished bride, so artfully adorned in jewels and silver and gold. Like the brides of old, when we accept Christ He becomes our bridegroom and he adorns us with ornaments – ornaments of grace: peace, hope, joy and love. Each ornament enhances our beauty in His sight and He gazes lovingly upon His cherished ones so beautifully adorned. And the tree?
Christmas symbol: TREE – I love it when a plan comes together! The tree we have so lovingly and joyfully decorated with ornaments does, indeed, represent the Bride of Christ. “a tree planted by the waters…..” “the fruit of the righteous is a tree of life” “..the planting of the Lord…”“.. be called trees of righteousness …” “..and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations …..” Just as we decorate our tree, so Christ decorates us! And our leaves, our hands, are the healing hands for all nations as we journey far to help, to minister, and to witness to others of His amazing grace. Some are cedars, some are pines, some are firs, but every tree used at Christmas is an evergreen. Why? Because an evergreen tree is always brimming with life. Unlike deciduous trees that appear dead half of the year, the evergreen tree is always displaying its beauty and grace. Merry CHRIST-mas!