Advent Devotional 6

December 6 - Family

Often what makes Christmas special is being with people you love. And who do we love more than family? There are as many different ways to do family as there are people on this planet – it doesn’t have to be by blood. Saint Paul says in Romans 8 that we have received a spirit of adoption into the family, not a spirit of slavery or fear.

The best family moments help us be ourselves, and Christmas is one such moment. What moments come to mind that your family has spent together around the Christmas season?

My family always participated in a Christmas pageant each year. The city would set up scenes and people would drive by and see some of the classic scenes of Christmas. Unwrapping presents under the tree. Singing carols together. But as you progressed in the pageant, the scenes went from classic American Christmas to the Bible stories of Christmas, and you saw a different take on family. Unwed Mary visiting her relative Elizabeth to share in their unexpected pregnancies together. Joseph and Mary searching for a place to stay because the inn was full and they had no family to welcome them. The shepherds warming themselves around a fire in a kind of family through vocation. The final scene of the Christmas pageant was Jesus, alone, but inviting everyone to be a part of God’s family. My family always helped make these scenes happen, but rarely were we able to be together in the same scene.

Sometimes this is how God works. Family isn’t as simple as the people we share a home with or who our mother is. The Holy Spirit can bring people together into a spirit of adoption this Christmas and we can all be family. Isn’t that the hope of Christmas?

Whether your family is picture perfect or messy like God’s take on family, we hope you’ll find a place for family this Christmas.

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