“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love” (1 Corinthians 13:13 NIV).
Friend to Friend
With Christmas just around the corner, it is easy to get so busy with the cooking, decorating and shopping that we forget why we’re doing all this in the first place. Sometimes, the very people we love get lost in the hustle and bustle of packed schedules, holiday parties, and Christmas musicals. This Christmas, let’s keep our focus on Jesus and not forget to invite the honored guest to His own birthday celebration.
Today, I want to share a poem that I wrote a few years ago that helps me keep a proper perspective on Christmas.
1 Corinthians 13 Christmas Style
©By Sharon Jaynes
If I decorate my house perfectly with lovely plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights, and shiny glass balls, but do not show love to my family – I’m just another decorator.
If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals, and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love to my family – I’m just another cook.
If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home, and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family – it profits me nothing.
If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties, and sing in the choir’s cantata but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.
Love stops the cooking to hug the child.
Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the husband.
Love is kind, though harried and tired.
Love doesn’t envy another home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.
Love doesn’t yell at the kids to get out of your way.
Love doesn’t give only to those who are able to give in return, but rejoices in giving to those who can’t.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things.
Love never fails. Video games will break; pearl necklaces will be lost; golf clubs will rust. But giving the gift of love will endure.
Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for sending your Son, Jesus, that starry night in Bethlehem. Like the Shepherds, I am still amazed at Your great love. May I not lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas, but celebrate Jesus’ birthday with joy! In Jesus’ Name, Amen
Now It’s Your Turn
What are some ways that you can make sure to love your family well this holiday season?
Are there any activities that you need to eliminate from your busy schedule to alleviate over-commitment? Is your family being neglected because of a hectic Christmas schedule?
If that question wasn’t painful enough, here’s another one. Is Jesus being neglected as you prepare for His birthday? Ouch! I just stomped on my own toe!
To comment on today’s devotion, visit my facebook page
More From the Girlfriends
It is hard not to get so caught up in the pre-Christmas swirl of activity that we lose focus on what’s important. If you would like ways to keep Jesus the focus of your holiday season, you’ll love Celebrating a Christ Centered Christmas by Sharon Jaynes. It’s packed with helpful ideas and holiday inspiration.
I read this poem on our ‘Journey’ magazine and thought how beautifully and truthfully put. It is just so right and thought of using it as part of our Christmas message in our Christmas service. Can you give me the permission to do this please. I have been praying for a simple practical message this Christmas and this poem appeared. I thank God for this and for your great work. Blessings.
Thanks, Sharon. This has been shared as a meme on Facebook, and Anne R. Allen (https://annerallen.com/2017/12/frazzled-blame-charles-dickens/) pointed me to the meme’s origin. Beautiful sentiments.
Merry CHRISTmas and Happy New Year!
Aaaw… that is sooo good and so true! I fwd this to my friends and family. Hope Love goes viral 💕💕
I love this and didn’t know who wrote until today. I had a newspaper clipping of it and made about 40 copies to include in my Christmas cards. I’m sorry I didn’t give you credit. Please forgive.
Many thanks, Sharon – a friend of mine e-mailed me a copy of your lovely poem a while ago,
and I came upon it again recently.
With your permission – I will read the poem out in church at our Christmas morning service.
With many thanks, once again –
“Diolch yn fawr,” all the way from Wales, Britain.
I saw where this was copyrighted by Claire Jordan (of the U.K.) in 2001.
I am a pastor in South Dakota. I just heard 1 Corinthians 13 – Christmas Style, for the first time today on KLove radio. I would like to read this, giving you credit, as a part of one of my Christmas Eve Services. Do I have your permission for that. Thank you. Powerful and very true words. Thank You.
One of our church members who prepares the weekly bulletin included your Christmas version of I Cor. 13 in the bulletin on Sunday, Dec. 18; I just today took time to actually read it and absorb it. Excellent. Thank you. Too bad this has not received wider publicity.