Friday, December 17, 2010

He Sees You When You're Sleeping

He’s popping up all over the place. Now that his presence has been officially ushered in at the end of the Thanksgiving parades, that plump, jolly, white-bearded man in a fuzzy red suit will be found in every mall.

While some say Santa is a myth, many scholars agree that Santa Claus was actually a real man named Saint Nicholas. It was believed he was a 4th century Greek Christian bishop from the area that is now known as Turkey. Old St. Nick was a true saint; holy, charitable, and with a heart for the Lord evidenced by the way he sacrificially gave to others.

It can be hard to find fault with the likes of Santa; his personification is one of joy and giving. Still, it is a shame that many children (and even adults) know more about the mythical aspects of Santa Claus (where he lives, what he drives, and what his eight coursers names are); than they do about the real reason why we celebrate Christmas – the birth of Jesus Christ. The real reason for the season has become even more obscured over the years, yet ironically even St. Nick worshipped the One who was born of a virgin. St. Nicholas knew the price Jesus paid for redeeming sinners; he was so humbled by this fact that he dedicated his own life to being a blessing to others.

There is an image that has become popular in the past few years. You’ve probably seen it; Santa Claus removes his hat and is bowing down to the infant Jesus as He lies in His manger. It is a perfect reminder of the proper perspective that almighty God wants us to have. After all, one day every knee shall bow to the Lord (Romans 14:11).

Personally, I like the fun of including Santa Claus in the celebration of the birth of Jesus, but not at the expense of the Truth. Christmas should be one huge birthday party with Jesus in the center. Lest we forget, Jesus is the One who “sees you when you’re sleeping; He knows when you’re awake”. And He knows whether or not you truly love Him and whether you are truly sold out to Him. He knows whether He is a priority in your life or not. In actuality, Jesus knows us better than we know ourselves. The question that this season begs to ask is, how well do we know Him?

O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely (Psalm 139:1-4).

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