Ever wondered what it means to keep Christ in Christmas? Well, you’re doing it right now!

You’re taking a break from shopping or Christmas goodies or a gift exchange because a nudge from the Spirit invited you to pause.

You are taking specific steps to live out your belief that Jesus is the reason for the season.

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Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord from heaven! Praise God on the heights! Praise God, all of you who are his messengers! Praise God, all of you who comprise his heavenly forces! Sun and moon, praise God! All of you bright stars, praise God! You highest heaven, praise God! Do the same, you waters that are above the sky! Let all of these praise the Lord’s name because God gave the command and they were created! God set them in place always and forever. God made a law that will not be broken.

Psalm 148: 1-6

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There are people still recovering from damage to their homes caused by hurricanes Irma and Harvey. There are little children who will not get enough to eat today. There are people who live in fear of violence because of war or abuse. Is God worthy of praise when our neighbor is suffering? It’s hard to sing a song of thanksgiving to God when we are suffering.

The Psalms reminds us to look to the beauty of the earth and heavens to find inspiration for our praise and thanks, even when life’s circumstances seems cruel and uncertain. Look to the stars! Look to the mountain tops! See God in the sunset! See God in the ocean, the river, the fountain. The beauty and order of creation spark our confidence in God’s faithfulness. In joy and in sadness, the Lord God is worthy of our praise.

Tammy Wiens

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God of creation, you fill the universe with things too wonderful for words. Put a song on my lips and gratitude in my heart. Remind me, right now, in this moment, that you’ve got a pulse on everything that’s happening in the world, even if I can’t always see it. Give me faith to trust you more. Amen.

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May your heart be full of gladness
And the peace that covers sadness
May your joy be overflowing
And your many blessings growing
May you have the time you've longed for
With the people that you love
May you have yourself a merry Christmas now.

Sara Groves, “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” 2008

Tammy Wiens

Tammy Wiens is the Associate for Christian Formation at the Presbyterian Mission Agency of the Presbyterian Church (USA). Among many and varied tasks, she serves as Mission Coordinator for UKirk college ministries. She also works alongside Christian educators from many different denominations to figure out together what it means to teach and grow in faith. When not at work, Tammy loves to ride her bike, walk a golf course and hit a few balls, and make music with her husband, Sheldon.

Unto Us: Silent Night


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