Colorful and eye-catching decorations, wrapped gifts under the tree and the excitement of getting together with family and friends are among the reasons we take a day off from work to celebrate Dec. 25. However, they pale in comparison to the real reason for celebrating Christmas.
The meaning is found in the second chapter of Luke, the gospel writer:
And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered.
This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria.
So all went to be registered, everyone in his own city.
Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into 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 wife, who was with child.
So it was that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered, and she brought forth her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger because there was no room for them in the inn.
Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night, and behold an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.
Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. 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.
“And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, 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, goodwill toward men.”
Good wishes to you and your family for a blessed Christmas.