Sanctification: Term meaning being made holy, or purified, it is used broadly of the whole Christian experience, though most theologians prefer to use it in a restricted sense to distinguish it from related terms, such as regeneration, justification, and glorification.
There are those who feel it improper to celebrate the Christmas season because of the secularism and materialism which is so heavily involved now. I personally take the opposite view as far as celebrating, and hope you will too as you read this very short thought on sanctifying the Christmas season.
I was talking with Brother Wayne Hawbaker Friday night at a Christmas fundraiser that I was involved in hosting. He mentioned how wonderful Christmas events are because it allows us as Christians to sanctify and redeem the season for the glory and honor of God. It allows the world to see the love of Christ by Christians meeting the needs of those around us who are in need. Programs such as Operation Christmas Child of Samaritans Purse or the Angel Tree Project would most likely not happen if we did not celebrate the Christmas season. The work of The Salvation Army would falter greatly without donations to the bell-ringer’s red kettles during the Christmas season.
Carols are played in supermarkets and malls. While a lot of the songs are secular, think of this way; all the songs are secular the rest of the year, so actually you are hearing more about Jesus during the Christmas season.
Nativities are set up in yards at homes and churches. Sure, some have all the secular items out, but the nativities cause people to think. Without the Christmas season, would people put out nativities, and would people stop and think about Jesus coming to earth to save them?
Carolers from churches and families go throughout neighborhoods, nursing homes, and church homes singing the wonderful songs of Jesus. Sometimes people do this other times of the year, but really, Christmas makes you want to do it and allows it to be accepted.
Christmas plays and gatherings are hosted at churches and advertised on radios and in newspapers. People are welcomed in to hear some message of hope, healing, love, and salvation in Jesus Christ.
Peace, merriness, good cheer, joy, life…these are all associated with Christmas. What a contrast from the holiday two months before. Without the Christmas season, Halloween would be the biggest “holiday.”
The spirit of giving abounds during this season. Think of the millions who gain from this generosity and come to know Christ. Hundreds of thousands of people around the world are hearing of Jesus and they are accepting Him as their savior all because of American’s celebrating the Christmas season. While we certainly don’t need to go into the negative sides of the secular celebration, let us rejoice that much good is being accomplished for His kingdom this Christmas season.
Let us continue to proclaim tidings of great joy to all people! Pray that the amazing power of God will sanctify this season through your gifts, efforts, and involvement in outreach. May God richly bless you, and I hope you have a merry Christmas!