Lights have long been an important part of Christmas—from the time when my mother used to put lighted candles in the window, to the days when my own youngsters and their mother and I would set up the Christmas tree in the living room and string it with all kinds of yellow and blue and red and green lights, to today when we watch our grandchildren do the same. And, of course, on that first Christmas night it was a brilliant light that lit up the countryside and startled some shepherds as they got the first news that the Savior had been born in Bethlehem.
The Old Testament prophet Isaiah first put light and Christmas together. Looking far into the future, he wrote: “The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light; they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined” (Isaiah 9:2). The meaning of his words became clear when, seven centuries later, a man named Simeon saw the Christ Child and exclaimed in prayer: “I have seen the Savior You have given the world. He is the Light that will shine upon the nations.” (Luke 2:30-32).
This Christmas let’s turn on the lights and let them radiate out in glowing celebration with these tips.
1. Affirm a peaceful, content attitude.
Every morning say, “This is the day which the Lord hath made; I will rejoice and be glad in it.” The Book of Proverbs says: “He that is of a merry heart hath a continual feast.” This thought is on the basis of good sound mental health. But we grow bigger if we follow the Man who said: “My joy shall be in you.” “Rejoice, I say, and again I say, Rejoice.” When you open your heart to Him, he fills it with happiness.
2. Pray for God’s will in your life.
Every day say simply and sincerely, “Dear Lord, I surrender my life to you. I open my heart to you, fill it with happiness.”
3. Ask for great and mighty things.
God intended us to walk the earth as giants in spirit, forgiving, understanding, harmonious. And how is this accomplished? “Call upon Me and I will answer you and I will show you great and mighty things.” In this month of your soul’s rebirth, make that text your talisman.
4. Welcome Jesus.
As we approach Christmas Day say a special greeting of welcome to The Child. It’s a happy birthday for the world, and a special happy birthday for your renewed spirit.