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Holiday Time Already?
by Donna Wittlif
11/16/2018 / Holidays
“Be ye therefore imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, even as Christ also loved you, and gave himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God” (Ephesians 5:1-2).
In the United States we celebrate about twenty-one holidays, depending on who you are and what you count. Only three of our major holidays, or about fourteen percent, have something to do with Christianity—Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. In comparison, the Israelites celebrated seven festivals. They are all found in Leviticus Chapter 23.
The seven Jewish feasts were Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Feast of Firstfruits, the Feast of Weeks (Pentecost), the Feast of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement, and the Feast of Tabernacles. Each festival or feast had some historical or religious importance for the Israelites. They were celebrated according to instructions from God.
Because we are under a new covenant, we do not celebrate Jewish holidays and festivals. However, we do have a lot of holidays when families are traveling, entertaining, and shopping. The last two months of the year can be tiring and stressful.
The challenge for God’s children is to make the holidays less about material gifts and more about showing our love and thanksgiving to God and our compassion to others. We can make the days more memorable for family and friends by spending more time with them and doing activities with them instead of giving them things.
Holidays that originate with Christ and God give us opportunities to reach our neighbors with the gospel. They are some of the few times people who are not Christians hear about God and Jesus. It may be the only time they think about God. This year, let them hear it from you, and let them see God in your actions.
Hymn: “Let the Beauty of Jesus Be Seen in Me”
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I am the only gospel that others may see and hear. May they see You in me. In Jesus’s name. Amen.
Donna Wittlif is the author of Christian fiction for young adults and adults. Her new book Finding Her Heart is about a young woman who is heartbreakingly lonely. Is it because she has been diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome? See how God helps her find true love. www.donnarwittlif.com
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