The Rest of the Story

Note: Today’s devotional is offered as a resource that you can use with your family to help make the most of the Christmas season focus.

She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins. –Matthew 1:21

Each December we celebrate Christmas for the birth of Jesus. Then, in the spring, we celebrate Easter for Jesus’ death and resurrection. But really, these two parts of the story of Jesus’ life cannot be separated. Christmas would lose its meaning without remembering what Jesus did during His life.

Jesus lived to reveal God to us. He was crucified and rose again to pay the penalty for our sins, to invite us into relationship with God and to offer us eternal life.

Hail! the heaven-born Prince of Peace!
Hail! the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings,
Risen with healing in His wings.
Mild He lays His glory by,
Born that man no more may die;
Born to raise the sons of earth,
Born to give them second birth
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the newborn King”
  (from Hark! The Herald Angels Sing)

We celebrate Christmas not only for Jesus’ birth, but also for His life, death and resurrection. Through Him, we have a real reason to celebrate. We have our sins forgiven!

1. How do you feel our Christmas celebrations would be different if Jesus had not have been crucified or raised from the dead?

2. Make a list of all the reasons you are thankful for Jesus.

First, make a Christmas ornament out of a large nail. If you don’t have a large nail at home, visit a local home improvement or hardware store and purchase the largest nail you can find. At home, use some Christmas ribbon and glue to secure the ribbon to the nail. Tie the ribbon at the ends to make a loop. Then, use the above content to have a family discussion about Jesus and “the rest of the story”. Together, hang the nail ornament on your Christmas tree as a reminder that even as your family celebrates Christmas, you will remember all that Jesus has done.

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Jim Liebelt

Jim is Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for HomeWord. Jim has 40 years of experience as a youth and family ministry specialist, having served over the years as a pastor, author, editor, consultant, mentor, trainer, college instructor, and speaker. Jim’s HomeWord Culture Blog also appears on Jim and his wife Jenny live in Quincy, MA.

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