Sarah Trstenjak

I was in love with my husband-to-be long before he realized I should be the love of his life.  Once he realized his error, we were married six months later!  Through the good and the hard, we have been married almost 19 years!  We have been honored to do pre-marital counseling for BCF.  

 

They asked, “Where is the King of the Jews Who has been born?...We have come to worship Him.”

Matthew 2:2 (New Life Version)

 

    I find Christmas stressful.  I want to remember my family and friends and neighbors.  I want to make Christmas special for my children.  My husband, Scott, has reminded me, “It’s not our children’s birthdays we‘re celebrating.  It’s Jesus’.”  To be clear, we do give our children Christmas gifts and delight to do so, but we also want to keep the focus on Jesus.  
    A few years ago, we found a great resource that helps us remember and celebrate Jesus and His birthday!  A blog I read offered instructions for how to have an at-home Christmas service. 
The service has places to read from the Bible starting with the prophecies that told Jesus would be coming.  It also lists places where you sing songs that go along with the Bible readings. 
    We start in darkness aided by flashlights, as we read and sing.  This represents the spiritual darkness before Jesus’ birth.  As we continue reading, we come to the birth of Jesus, the Light of the World, and candles are lit. We have a birthday cake for Jesus and sing Happy Birthday to Him.  The service never goes perfectly.  One of our children nearly caught our guest’s hair on fire (true story!).  
    For us, this service helps place our hearts on why we really celebrate.  It’s a chance to worship Jesus, the newborn King, with our family. With all the stress and distraction of Christmas, I think it’s important that we are intentional about finding ways to prepare our own hearts.  For you, something different might help you focus on Jesus: a quiet walk, an annual watching of a biblical Christmas movie like The Nativity Story, a walk through the zoo as you admire God’s creation, or maybe listening to music that helps you worship Jesus.  This season, find a way to make time to remember why and honor Who we celebrate.