Merry Christmas! (By Dan Adams)

Merry Christmas! As we look forward to one of the greatest reasons to rejoice and celebrate, I want to share with you one of my favorite childhood memories. As far back as I can remember, my dad would read the Christmas story to our family.
I’m not sure how accurate my childhood memory is with the details, but it seems to me that from the time the Christmas tree went up until Christmas Eve, Dad would gather the family around and read the Luke 2 account of Christ’s birth, night after night. Now that might sound repetitive to you, but to my sponge-like child’s mind, I soaked it in and committed it to memory, and then to my heart.
While I certainly enjoy many of the holiday traditions, this, by far, has had the greatest impact on me. As a father now myself, it’s caused me to reflect on what kind of family traditions I’m sharing with my family. I know firsthand the impression they can leave on our children.
If you’re anything like me, Christmastime is busy, with extra gatherings, festivities, shopping, wrapping, and family obligations. It’s hard to find time to slow down and reflect on the greatest gift ever given. So I encourage you to pause for a moment and reflect on this simple, well known, but profound story. It’s the account of the coming of the long awaited, much anticipated, Savior of the world.
Luke 2:10-14
In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be registered, each to his own town. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”