*warning: Christian propaganda ahead*
In church last Sunday, we had a "Lessons and Carols" service. The service consisted of scripture readings surrounding the Christmas story each followed by a Christmas carol. Some I knew and some I didn't. It struck me, though, how many Christmas songs involved talking about preparing your heart for Christ's arrival.
For example, in "Joy to the World" (one of my personal favorites):
LET EVERY HEART PREPARE HIM ROOM!
Not too long ago, I talked with my friend Gary about the nature of sin. I know some people who were raised Christian and are now atheist who have a very different experience with the Christian concept of sin than I do. One of them said to me that all he ever hears in Christian "mythology" is talk about fear and sin. He believes theology to be a long list of "DON'Ts." That has not been my experience. None of us is perfect. No matter what we believe or don't believe. We will always make mistakes. But Christians believe in the concept of grace. And I personally believe that true sin is whatever keeps us from God. It isn't a laundry list of rules such as "don't have sex" and "don't have doubts."
In the Christmas season, we are compelled to prepare our hearts to receive the greatest gift. It is the perfect time for a little pre-Spring cleaning. Because when Lent rolls around, we'll have lots of spiritual work to do. In the meantime, we can put aside all the stress of gifts and parties and hustle and bustle and make some time to prepare Him room. And to spread a little of that cheer and love to our neighbors.
P.S. What are your favorite Christmas carols and why? Drop me a comment.
My favorites are JOY TO THE WORLD, THE CHRISTMAS SONG and HAVE YOURSELF A MERRY LITTLE CHRISTMAS. But really, I love them all!