20 Days Until Christmas!
Song: “Deck the Halls” by Mannheim Steamroller
Christmas Album:“Heavenly Christmas” by Jackie Evancho
Christmas DVD: “Four Christmases”
Netflix Movie: “Dear Santa”
Amazon Prime Movie: “Mule-tide Christmas”
Feeln Movie: “Santa Claus: The Movie”
• “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” 7 p.m., FreeForm
• National Christmas Tree Lighting, 7 p.m., Hallmark
• “The Great Christmas Light Fight,” 8 p.m., ABC
• “Merry Matrimony,” 8 p.m., Hallmark
• “Scrooged,” 9 p.m., FreeForm
• “Christmas Incorporated,” 10 p.m., Hallmark
• “Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas,” 11:05 p.m., USA
Recipe: Green Bean Casserole
Quick Thought for Christmas
“And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth…”
Who is the richest most powerful person that comes to your mind? These days, it might be Bill Gates or Donald Trump. Let’s go with Bill. (He is the richest man in the world, and he’s a lot less recognizable than the Donald…)
There are times when I’d like $80. Put a capital B on the end of that and you have Bill Gates. Yes, he’s worth close to $80 billion. The man wants for nothing. He lives in a 66,000-foot mansion called Xanadu 2.0 that has an underwater music system and artwork that changes on the wall at the touch of a button. He’s on top of the world, and will be for the rest of his life.
Now, imagine that Bill Gates decides to do away with all of that. One day he simply disappears, leaving a note that he is going away to live a simpler life. He uses some of his money to give himself a new face and invite a new persona. Several months later, this new man appears – Tom Smith. He has a job making just enough to make ends meet. He eats junk food. He drives an old used car.
Who would do that? I doubt Bill Gates would, and I wouldn’t either.
But that’s what Jesus did. He gave up the greatest riches ever known, even Heaven itself, to come and live among us. And it wasn’t just a social experiment. He did it so that at the end of a perfect life, He could give that life up so that we would have a way to spend eternity with Him. His sacrifices – both on Heaven and on Earth – are our ticket to Heaven.
When you look at the manger this Christmas, take a look both back and forward. Look at where that baby’s journey started and ended. It started at the right hand of God in Heaven. And it ended nailed to a rough-hewn cross. Those are some sacrifices worth taking to heart, and definitely worth thanking God for.
Reflection copyright © 2016 by Doug DeBolt.
Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.