What does Christmas mean to you?! Is it family time and feasting, presents and Father Christmas, trees and decorations or Mary and Joseph welcoming the Saviour of the world into their arms?
I find it interesting at this time of the year that many Christians get a 'bee-in-their-bonnet' about the shorthand of the word Christmas as Xmas ... supposedly taking Christ out of the whole celebration. Over the last couple of years there have even been many Facebook statuses urging people to put the Christ back in Christmas.
When we were at All Nations I got the chance to study a little New Testament Greek, something I really enjoyed (yes, that sentence does sound sad ... even to me!) Even having done that it didn't click in my head until I read a children's book last Christmas that actually the X in Xmas stands for something very significant.
The History of Christmas website explains it really well ... so I won't try and put it in my own words ...
Xmas is an abbreviation for Christmas. It is derived from the word ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ, transliterated as Christos, which is Greek for Christ. Greek is the language in which the whole New Testament was written.
Originally, Xmas was an abbreviation where the X represents the Greek letter chi, which is the first letter of Christ's name. However, because of the modern interpretations of the letter X, many people are unaware of this and assume that this abbreviation is meant to drop Christ from Christmas.
So, there you have it, instead of taking Christ out of Christmas ... it's actually putting him in, almost in a more authentic way!!! For us as a family, Jesus is most certainly the main focus of our celebrations. However we definitely enjoy all the extra trappings that now get incorporated with this time of year as well.
This year will be our first Christmas as a family of four and we're slowly laying our family traditions that will continue and evolve in the years to come. I hope and pray that you have time to remember where this whole holiday originated while you're busy celebrating this weekend.
As a family, we wish you a Happy Christmas ...