July 9, 2008

 

Merry Christmas in July!

Susanne Scheppmann

 

“Then the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10-11(NKJV)

 

Devotion:

I should have used that newly advertised “prescription strength” deodorant today. Our outside temperature was a sweltering 115 degrees. It felt more like 350 degrees in my car as I toodled around doing my errands. The air conditioning never had a chance to cool the car before I’d open the door and drag myself into the next store.

 

I roasted as I drove. To my chagrin, a traffic signal changed to red and I braked reluctantly at the busy intersection. The car stopped and I saw waves of heat radiate off the pavement.

 

Then I saw something … a mirage maybe … a bouncing Santa Claus. Upon closer inspection, I discovered a bulky, garish balloon outside an electronics store. A sign hanging in the overheated air read, “Celebrate Christmas in July!” The sign tried to cajole potential consumers to spend their money in the store, without acknowledging the true meaning of Christmas.

 

Suddenly, an idea pushed its way into my overheated thoughts. “Why couldn’t we celebrate Christmas in July? Wouldn’t it be fun to have a little Christmas celebration without all the holiday fuss of December?”

 

As the car idled, my mind raced. My family could celebrate the birth of our Savior and make it intentional—especially if it was in July. We could decorate a tree in our backyard. We could barbeque a turkey breast. Then after dinner, we could sit on the patio and read the Christmas story as we watch the sunset.

 

The light changed and so did my attitude. I no longer dreaded a day full of errands in the sun-baked desert. In fact, I added a couple more stops to my list. First, I swung into a discount store to pick up a stronger deodorant and a few “stocking stuffers” for my family. Then I headed off to the grocery store to prepare for Christmas dinner on the grill in July.

 

I believe honoring Christmas in July will help my family to focus on the birth of our Savior in a unique way. And who knows—it may become a family tradition that will create lasting memories for our family and our faith.

 

So, “Merry Christmas in July!”

 

 

 

Dear Lord, help me to remember to celebrate You throughout the year. Grant me innovative ways to weave the story of Your life throughout my family’s ordinary day-to-day routines. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Related Resources:

Do You Know Him?

 

Today’s P31 Radio Show

 

Visit Susanne Schepmann’s blog

 

Perplexing Proverbs for Women Bible study by Susanne Scheppman

 

Application Steps: 

Read Luke 1:1-2:20. Consider how you can celebrate Christmas throughout the year.

This month plan a special activity to honor the birth of Jesus.

 

Reflections: 

Do I reflect on the birth of Christ only in December?

 

How might my life change if I celebrated the birth of Christ year round?

 

Power Verses:

Matthew 1:23, “The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel - which means, ‘God with us.’” (NIV)

 

Luke 2:11-12, “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (NIV)

 

John 1:14, “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (NIV)

 

 

Proverbs 31 Ministries

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