Christmas Stories & Illustrations
Birds Set Free
A.J. Gordon was the great Baptist pastor of the Clarendon Church in Boston, Massachusetts. One day he met a young boy in front of the sanctuary carrying a rusty cage in which several birds fluttered nervously. Gordon inquired, "Son, where did you get those birds?" The boy replied, "I trapped them out in the field." "What are you going to do with them?" "I'm going to play with them, and then I guess I'll just feed them to an old cat we have at home." When Gordon offered to buy them, the lad exclaimed, "Mister, you don't want them, they're just little old wild birds and can't sing very well." Gordon replied, "I'll give you $2 for the cage and the birds." "Okay, it's a deal, but you're making a bad bargain." The exchange was made and the boy went away whistling, happy with his shiny coins. Gordon walked around to the back of the church property, opened the door of the small wire coop, and let the struggling creatures soar into the blue. The next Sunday he took the empty cage into the pulpit and used it to illustrate his sermon about Christ's coming to seek and to save the lost -- paying for them with His own precious blood. "That boy told me the birds were not songsters," said Gordon, "but when I released them and they winged their way heavenward, it seemed to me they were singing, 'Redeemed, redeemed, redeemed!'"
This is Advent. And the message of these times is the song of those wild birds.
It's the song sung in every carol this season: Redeemed!
It's the meaning behind every gift given under the tree: Redeemed!
It's the Word the shepherds heard: Redeemed!
It's the assurance Mary received: Redeemed!
It's the star the Wisemen followed: Redeemed!
You and I have been trapped by sin, but Christ has purchased our pardon. We
have been redeemed!
Missing the Big News
It was in December of 1903, that after many attempts, the Wright brothers, Orville and Wilbur, were successful in getting their "flying machine" off the ground and into the air at Kitty Hawk. Thrilled over the accomplishment, they telegraphed this message to their sister Katherine: "We have actually flown 120 feet. Will be home for Christmas." Katherine hurried to the editor of the local newspaper and showed him the message. He glanced at it and said, "How nice. The boys will be home for Christmas." He totally missed the big news-for the first time in human history, man had flown! (SOURCE: Daily Bread, December 23, 1991.)
A ten-year old, who was becoming quite knowledgeable about the Bible because of her grandmother's teaching, asked her grandmother: "Which Virgin was the mother of Jesus? The Virgin Mary or the King James Virgin?"
One of my favorite Christmas stories is about the old shoe cobbler who dreamed one Christmas Eve that Jesus would come to visit him the next day. The dream was so real that he was convinced it would come true.
So the next morning he got up & went out & cut green boughs & decorated his little cobbler shop & got all ready for Jesus to come & visit. He was so sure that Jesus was going to come that he just sat down & waited for Him.
The hours passed & Jesus didn't come. But an old man came. He came inside for a moment to get warm out of the winter cold. As the cobbler talked with him he noticed the holes in the old man's shoes, so he reached up on the shelf & got him a new pair of shoes. He made sure they fit & that his socks were dry & sent him on his way.
Still he waited. But Jesus didn't come. An old woman came. A woman who hadn't had a decent meal in two days. They sat & visited for a while, & then he prepared some food for her to eat. He gave her a nourishing meal & sent
her on her way.
Then he sat down again to wait for Jesus. But Jesus still didn't come.
Then he heard a little boy crying out in front of his shop. He went out & talked with the boy, & discovered that the boy had been separated from his parents & didn't know how to get home. So he put on his coat, took the boy by the hand & led him home.
When he came back to his little shoe shop it was almost dark & the streets were emptied of people. And then in a moment of despair he lifted his voice to heaven & said, "Oh Lord Jesus, why didn't you come?"
And then in a moment of silence he seemed to hear a voice saying, "Oh shoe cobbler, lift up your heart. I kept my word. Three times I knocked at your friendly door. Three times my shadow fell across your floor. I was the man with the bruised feet. I was the woman you gave to eat. I was the boy on the homeless street."
Jesus had come. The cobbler just didn't realize it.
by Melvin Newland
If You Ever Want to See Your Mother Again.
A small boy was writing a letter to God about the Christmas presents he badly wanted. "I've been good for six months now." he wrote. But after a moment's reflection he crossed out "six months" and wrote "three months." After a pause that was crossed out and he put "two weeks." There was another pause and that was crossed out too. He got up from the table and went over to the nativity scene that had the figures of Mary and Joseph. He picked up the figure of Mary, wrapped it gently in a cloth, and put it in a drawer in his room. He then went back to his writing and started again: "Dear God, if ever you want to see your mother again.!"
The Three Wise Firemen
There was a art contest held in a local school one Christmas season a few years ago in East Texas. One of the prize winners was a picture drawn by a nine year old boy showing three men, offering gifts to the baby Jesus in his manger. What made the picture unique is how the three gift presenters arrived - there was fire truck on the side of the picture.
The principle asked the boy about his decision to draw the truck and the boy, in his heavy East-Texas accent, was quick to reply: "Well, the Bible says the wise men came from a-far."
If I Could Only Become a Bird.
Paul Harvey tells the story about a family on Christmas Eve. This family had a tradition where the Mother and children would go to the Christmas Eve service, and the Father would stay home and read the paper. When the family returns home from church, they would all gather to open up their presents.
The Father was not an evil man, but he just couldn't believe in the childhood stories anymore of God coming as a baby in a manger. As the family left for church, he opened up the evening paper and began to read by the fireplace.
Suddenly, he heard tapping on the window. It was a bird flying against the glass of his window trying to get out of the snow into the warmth of his home. The man had compassion on the bird, and he went outside, hoping to bring it in.
As he approached the bird, the bird just flew against the window even harder. Pretty soon, the bird flew into the bushes below the window, half frozen, yet too afraid to be caught by this huge man. The more the man tried to reach for the bird, the more the bird flew frantically into the snow and thorns of the bushes.
After a few minutes in the cold and seeing the bird continue to injure itself, the man yelled out in frustration, "Stupid bird, can't you understand that I'm trying to help?" The man paused and thought, "If only you understood you wouldn't fly away ... if only ... if only I could become a bird, and get you to understand."
Just then, the church bells rang, as they always have on the hour. But when the man heard the bells this time, he fell to his knees and began to cry, saying, "Oh, God, I didn't understand. Oh, God, I didn't understand."
God's Son came in human form that we might understand from where we have come, for what reason we were separated and how we could be restored to God.
Our Greatest Need
If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent us an educator; If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent us a scientist; If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent us an economist; If our greatest need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an entertainer; But our greatest need was forgiveness, so God sent us a Savior.
Next Time It Will Be Different
The First Time Jesus Came
He came veiled in the form of a child.
A star marked His arrival.
Wise men brought Him gifts.
There was no room for Him.
Only a few attended His arrival.
The Next Time Jesus Comes
He will be recognized by all.
Heaven will be lit by His glory.
He will bring rewards for His own.
The world won’t be able to contain His glory.
Every eye shall see Him.
He will come as Sovereign King and Lord of all.
- John F. MacArthur Jr.
The Best Christmas Ever
A store owner was doing some last minute Christmas shopping with his young son when he saw another store owner with whom he had been friends for some time. The two of them exchanged greetings and spoke with each other about what a financially profitable season it had been for their respective stores. The small boy overheard his father say, "This has been the best Christmas ever."
As the store owners parted company, the father and son continued their shopping, but the father noticed his son had become very quiet. He inquired as to his son's silence, and his son replied, "Dad, you just told Mr. Johnson that this was the best Christmas ever."
His dad replied, "I did, son. The economy is great, and people are really spending."
"O.K." the son replied, "It's just that I always thought the first Christmas was the best one."
Look What Has Come
In his 1942 devotional Abundant Living, E. Stanley Jones, Methodist doctor and missionary to India, writes:
The early Christians did not say in dismay: "Look what the world has come to," but in delight, "Look what has come to the world." They saw not merely the ruin, but the Resource for the reconstruction of that ruin. They saw not merely that sin did abound, but that grace did much more abound. On that assurance the pivot of history swung from blank despair, loss of moral nerve, and fatalism, to faith and confidence that at last sin had met its match.
A Politically Correct Christmas
"To avoid offending anybody, the school dropped religion altogether and started singing about the weather. At my son's school, they now hold the winter program in February and sing increasingly non-memorable songs such as
‘Winter Wonderland,’ ‘Frosty the Snowman,’ and this is a real song ‘Suzy Snowflake,’ all of which is pretty funny because we live in Miami. A visitor from another planet would assume that the children belonged to the Church of Meteorology."
Dave Barry in his "Notes on Western Civilization" (Chicago Tribune Magazine, July 28, 1991)
In this poem written some fifteen centuries ago, Augustine tried to capture the mystery of the Incarnation:
Maker of the sun,
He is made under the sun.
In the Father he remains,
From his mother he goes forth.
Creator of heaven and earth,
He was born on earth under heaven.
He is wisely speechless.
Filling the world,
He lies in a manger.
Ruler of the stars,
He nurses at his mother’s bosom.
He is both great in the nature of God,
And small in the form of a servant.
Remembering Atheists at Christmas
From a few years ago…
Complaints about a nativity scene in the Capitol are not bothering South Dakota Governor Bill Janklow. He’s prepared to let every religion put something on display in the Capitol, and even has an "empty corner" set aside for atheists.
‘Twas the Fight Before Christmas
By Tony Cooke and David Beebe
‘Twas the fight before Christmas,
And all through the house,
Not a creature was peaceful,
Not even my spouse.
The bills were strung out on our table with dread,
In hopes that our checkbook would not be in the red.
The children were fussing and throwing a fit,
When Billy came screaming and cried, "I’ve been bit."
And Momma with her skillet, and I with the remote,
She said, "You change one more channel and I’ll grab your throat."
When on the TV there arose such a clatter,
I sat up on the couch to see what was the matter.
When what to my wondering eyes should appear,
The cable was out, it was my worst fear.
"The Cowboys, the Celtics, the Raiders, the Knicks,
Without the sports channel I’d soon need a fix!"
And then in the midst of my grievous sorrow,
I remembered the times I had promised, "tomorrow…"
"Not now, my children, but at some soon time,
Dad will play with you, and things will be fine."
Now under conviction, I looked at my wife,
Where was my kindness? Why all the strife?
My heart quickly softened; I now saw my task,
Some love and attention was all they had asked.
I gathered my family and called them by name,
And told them with God’s help I’d not be the same.
We’ll keep Christ in Christmas and honor His plan.
No more fights before Christmas on that we will stand.
My children’s eyes twinkled; they squealed with delight.
My wife gladly nodded; she knew I was right.
It was the fight before Christmas, but God’s love had come through,
And just like He does, He made all things new.
Praise God for Christmas
Praise Him for the Incarnation,
For the word made flesh.
I will not sing of shepherds
Watching flocks on frosty nights,
Or angel choristers.
I will not sing of a stable bare in Bethlehem,
Or lowing oxen,
Wise men trailing star with gold,
Frankincense, and myrrh.
Tonight I will sing praise to the Father
Who stood on heaven’s threshold
And said farewell to His Son
As he stepped across the stars
To Bethlehem and Jerusalem.
And I will sing praise to the infinite, eternal Son,
Who became most finite, a baby
Who would one day be executed for my crime.
Praise Him in the heavens,
Praise Him in the stable,
Praise Him in my heart.
- Joseph Bayly
Some Christmas Reminders
* May the Christmas GIFTS remind us of God’s greatest gift, His only Son.
* May the Christmas CANDLES remind us of Him who is the "Light of the world."
* May the Christmas TREES remind us of another tree upon which he died.
* May the Christmas CHEER remind us of Him who said, "Be of good cheer."
* May the Christmas FEAST remind us of Him who is "the Bread of Life."
* May the Christmas BELLS remind us of the glorious proclamation of His birth.
* May the Christmas CAROLS remind us of the son the angels sang, "Glory to God in the Highest!"
* May the Christmas SEASON remind us in every way of Jesus Christ our King!
In a world that seems not only to be changing, but even to be dissolving, there are some tens of millions of us who want Christmas to be the same… with the same old greeting, "Merry Christmas," and no other.
We long for the abiding love among men of good will which the season brings… believing in this ancient miracle of Christmas with its softening, sweetening influence to tug at our heart strings once again.
We want to hold on to the old customs and traditions because they strengthen our family ties, bind us to our friends, make us one with all mankind for whom the Child was born, and bring us back again to the God Who gave His only begotten Son, that "whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have "everlasting life."
So we will not "spend" Christmas… nor "observe" Christmas.
We will "keep" Christmas keep it as it is… in all the loveliness of its ancient tradition.
May we keep it in our hearts, that we may be kept in its hope.
- Peter Marshall
The Christmas Problem
Once upon a Christmas Eve, a man sat in reflective silence before
the fireplace, pondering the meaning of Christmas. "There is no
point to a God who becomes man," he mused. "Why would an
all-powerful God want to share even one of His precious moments
with the likes of man? And even if He did, why would He choose to
be born in an animal stall? No way! The whole thing is absurd! I'm
sure that if God really wanted to come down to earth, He would
have chosen some other way." Suddenly, the man was roused from his
reverie by a strange sound outside. He went to the window and saw
a small gaggle of blue geese frantically honking and aimlessly
flopping about in the snow. They seemed dazed and confused.
Apparently they had dropped out in exhaustion from the flight
formations of a larger flock on its way from the Arctic Islands to
the warmer climes of the Gulf of Mexico. Moved to compassion, the
man tried to "shoo" the poor geese into his warm garage, but the
more he "shooed" the more they panicked. "If they only realized
I'm only trying to do what's best for them," he thought to
himself. "How can I make them understand my concern for their
well-being?" Then, this thought came to him: "If for just a
minute, I could become one of them, an ordinary goose, and
communicate with them in their own language, they would know what
I am trying to do." And suddenly ... suddenly, he remembered
Christmas and a smile came over his face. Suddenly, the Christmas
story no longer seemed absurd. Suddenly, he pictured that
ordinary-looking infant, lying in the manger, in that stable in
Bethlehem, and he knew the answer to his Christmas problem: God
had become one of us to tell us that He loves us.
C.S. Lewis wrote: "The Eternal Being, who knows everything and who
created the whole universe, became not only a man but a baby, and before
that a fetus in a woman's body."
A little boy and girl were singing their favorite Christmas carol in
church the Sunday before Christmas. The boy concluded "Silent Night"
with the words, "Sleep in heavenly beans." "No," his sister corrected,
"not beans, peas."
- Michael P. Green, Illustrations for Biblical Preaching, Grand Rapids:
Baker, 1993, p. 57.
Consider Again Christmas
When Pope Julius I authorized December 25 to be celebrated as the
birthday of Jesus in A.D. 353, who would have ever thought that it would
become what it is today.
When Professor Charles Follen lit candles on the first Christmas tree in
America in 1832, who would have ever thought that the decorations would
become as elaborate as they are today.
It is a long time since 1832, longer still from 353, longer still from
that dark night brightened by a special star in which Jesus the king was
born. Yet, as we approach December 25 again, it gives us yet another
opportunity to pause, and in the midst of all the excitement and
elaborate decorations and expensive commercialization which surround
Christmas today, to consider again the event of Christmas and the person
whose birth we celebrate.
- Brian L. Harbour, James W. Cox, The Minister's Manual: 1994, San
Fransico: Harper Collins, 1993, p. 254.
I'll Just Take the Skates
There was the little boy who approached Santa in a department store with
a long list of requests. He wanted a bicycle and a sled, a chemical set,
a cowboy suit, a set of trains, a baseball glove and roller skates.
"That's a pretty long list," Santa said sternly. "I'll have to check in
my book and see if you were a good boy."
"No, no," the youngster said quickly. "Never Mind checking. I'll just
take the roller skates."
Some Gifts to Give
Some gifts you can give this Christmas are beyond monetary value: Mend a
quarrel, dismiss suspicion, tell someone, "I love you." Give something
away--anonymously. Forgive someone who has treated you wrong. Turn away
wrath with a soft answer. Visit someone in a nursing home. Apologize if
you were wrong. Be especially kind to someone with whom you work. Give
as God gave to you in Christ, without obligation, or announcement, or
reservation, or hypocrisy.
- Charles Swindoll, Growing Strong, pp. 400-1.
"The mystery of the humanity of Christ, that He sunk Himself into our
flesh, is beyond all human understanding."
- Martin Luther, Table Talk.
Ah, Dearest Jesus, Holy Child
Ah, dearest Jesus, holy Child,
Make thee a bed, soft, undefiled,
Within my heart, that it may be
A quiet chamber kept for Thee.
My heart for very joy doth leap,
My lips no more can silence keep,
I too must sing, with joyful tongue,
That sweetest ancient cradle song,
Glory to God in highest heaven,
Who unto man His Son hath given
While angels sing with pious mirth.
A glad new year to all the earth.
- Martin Luther.
The Christmas Carol Dilemma
A lady who served on many civic committees, asked to select carols
suitable for a community Christmas-tree lighting, sought the help of her
pastor. When she scanned the list he had selected, she exclaimed in
dismay, "But they're all so theological."
The Ten Commandments for Christmas
The following item appeared in a church newsletter and contains some
good advice that will help us keep selfishness in check this Christmas:
I. Thou shalt not leave "Christ" out of Christmas,
making it "Xmas." To some, "X" is unknown.
II. Thou shalt prepare thy soul for Christmas. Spend
not so much on gifts that thy soul is forgotten.
III. Thou shalt not let Santa Claus replace Christ, thus
robbing the day of its spiritual reality.
IV. Thou shalt not burden the shop girl, the mailman, and
the merchant with complaints and demands.
V. Thou shalt give thyself with thy gift. This will
increase its value a hundred fold, and he who receiveth it shall
treasure it forever.
VI. Thou shalt not value gifts received by their cost.
Even the least expensive may signify love, and that is more priceless
than silver and gold.
VII. Thou shalt not neglect the needy. Share thy blessings
with many who will go hungry and cold unless thou are generous.
VIII. Thou shalt not neglect thy church. Its services highlight
the true meaning of the season.
IX. Thou shalt be as a little child. Not until thou has
become in spirit as a little one art thou ready to enter into the
kingdom of Heaven.
X. Thou shalt give thy heart to Christ. Let Him be at
the top of thy Christmas list.
Materialism & the Meaning of Christmas
A television interviewer was walking streets of Tokyo at Christmas time.
Much as in America, Christmas shopping is a big commercial success in
Japan. The interviewer stopped one young woman on the sidewalk, and
asked, "What is the meaning of Christmas?"
Laughing, she responded, "I don't know. Is that the day that Jesus
There was some truth in her answer.
Donald Deffner, Seasonal Illustrations, San Jose: Resource, 1992, p. 16.
The Real Picture
During the long war years a boy looked frequently at a picture of his
daddy on the table. He had left when the boy was a young infant. After
several years the boy had forgotten him as a person but he would often
look at the picture and say, "If only my father could step out of that
picture and be real...."
Christmas means that in a sad day of sin when man had almost forgotten
God, He stepped into the world in the form of His Son.
-- Pulpit Helps
Is Jesus Still a Baby?
A girl of ten years went with a group of family and friends to see the
Christmas light displays at various locations throughout the city. At
one church, they stopped and got out to look more closely at a
beautifully done nativity scene. "Isn't that beautiful?" said the little
girl's grandmother. "Look at all the animals, Mary, Joseph and the baby
Jesus." "Yes, Grandma," replied the granddaughter. "It is really nice.
But there is only one thing that bothers me. Isn't baby Jesus ever going
to grow up... he's the same size he was last year."
What Children Hear
I was reading the story of Jesus' birth to my day-care children one
morning. As usual, I stopped to see if they understood.
"What do we call the three wise men?" I asked.
"The three maggots," replied a bright 5-year-old.
"What gift did the Magi bring baby Jesus?" I corrected.
"Gold, Frankensteins and smurfs!" the same 5-year-old replied.
- Sent in to Christian Herald by Brenda Roberts, Stone Mountain, GA.
Purposes of the Incarnation
* To do the Father's will (Jn 6:38),
* To bear witness to the truth (Jn 18:37),
* To bring light to the darkness (Jn 12:46),
* To bring true judgment (Jn 9:39),
* To bring abundant life (Jn 10:10).
- Source Unknown.
Mary Had The Little Lamb
Mary had the little Lamb, who lived before His birth;
Self-existent Son of God, from Heaven He came to Earth.
Mary had the little Lamb; see Him in yonder stall --
Virgin-born Son of God, to save man from the Fall.
Mary had the little Lamb, obedient Son of God;
Everywhere the Father led, His feet were sure to trod.
Mary had the little Lamb, crucified on the tree
The rejected Son of God, He died to set men free.
1 Peter 1:18
Mary had the little Lamb -- men placed Him in the grave,
Thinking they were done with Him; to death He was no slave!
Mary had the little Lamb, ascended now is He;
All work on Earth is ended, our Advocate to be.
Mary had the little Lame -- mystery to behold!
From the Lamb of Calvary, a Lion will unfold.
Revelation 5: 5,6
When the Day Star comes again, of this be very sure:
It won't be Lamb-like silence, but with the Lion's roar.
- Marv & Marbeth Rosenthal
"One Solitary Life."
He was born in an obscure village, the child of a peasant woman. He
grew up in still another village, where he worked in a carpenter shop
until he was thirty. Then for three years he was an itinerant preacher.
He never wrote a book.
He never held an office.
He never had a family or owned a house.
He didn't go to college.
He never traveled 200 miles from the place where he was born.
He did none of these things one usually associates with greatness.
He had no credentials but himself.
He was only 33 when public opinion turned against him. His friends ran
away. He was turned over to his enemies and went through the mockery of
a trial. He was nailed to a cross between two thieves.
When he was dying, his executioners gambled for his clothing, the only
property he had on earth. When he was dead, he was laid in a borrowed
grave through the pity of a friend.
Nineteen centuries have come and gone, and today he is the central
figure of the human race, the leader of mankind's progress.
All the armies that ever marched, all the navies that ever sailed, all
the parliaments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned, put
together, have not affected the life of man on earth as much as that One
His name was Nicholas and he was born to a wealthy, elderly couple in
what is now Turkey in the 3rd century AD. When his parents died, he was
left with a large inheritance and gained a reputation for generously
giving to the poor. He entered a monastery and eventually was ordained
Bishop of the coastal city of Myra. Nicholas was known for miraculous
answers to prayer, confronting pagan "Diana" worship and being cruelly
imprisoned during Roman Emperor Diocletian's persecution of Christians.
When Constantine ended the persecution, Nicholas attended the Council of
Nicaea and helped write the Nicene Creed. A true Saint, Nicholas died on
December 6, 343AD. Early American writer Washington Irving, creator of
Rip Van Winkle and the Legend of Sleepy Hollow, was instrumental in
transforming Saint Nicholas into jolly ol' St. Nick!
-From American Minute with Bill Federer
American Minute is a daily e-mail sent out by Amerisearch.
You can receive this newsletter by going to http://www.amerisearch.net/
More on The Real St. Nick
The Hindu and the Ant Hill
There was a man from India who was a devout member of a Hindu sect and
who had a profound sense of reverence for life. He would not kill an
ant, a cow, or even a cobra, because to him, due to his belief in
reincarnation, he might be killing some past relative.
During his visit to America, he had been confronted with the claims of
Christ, yet he could not grasp the biblical truth that God actually
visited this planet in the flesh in the person of Jesus Christ. He could
not comprehend how the Great Creator God of the Universe could become a
man, or why.
One day as he was walking in the field meditating upon this new truth
about Jesus the Christ being God, he was wondering how this could
possibly be. He ran across a large ant hill with thousands of little
ants scurrying around in their busy like manner. He was standing there
observing with wonder the activity of these ants, and what amazing
creatures they are, when suddenly, he heard a tremendous and threatening
noise. It was the noise of a large tractor plowing the fields.
As he looked up he discovered that the tractor would soon be plowing
through that ant hill and thousands of ants would probably be killed and
their home destroyed. Gripped with the same concern you and I would feel
for hundreds of people trapped in a burning building, he became frantic.
He wanted to warn them of their impending destruction.
He thought to himself, "How can I warn them? If I could write in the
sand, they wouldn't be able to read it. If I shouted to them, they
wouldn't understand me. The only possible way I could communicate with
them would be by becoming an ant, if I had that ability."
Then suddenly he had a revelation from the Spirit of God. He saw why
God, the Creator of the universe, chose to become one of us by becoming
a man, in the Person of the God-man, Jesus of Nazareth.
Through his experience with the ant hill, the light suddenly came on in
the heart of that Hindu man, and now he understood the words of Paul:
"Though he was God, he did not demand and cling to his rights as God. He
made himself nothing; he took the humble position of a slave and
appeared in human form" (Philippians 2:6- 7, NLT).
-From Bill Bright, Daily Insights, a service of Global Pastors Network
"It is Christmas every time you let God love others through you... yes, it is Christmas every time you smile at your brother and offer him your hand."
- Mother Teresa
How many observe Christ's birthday! How few, his precepts! O! 'tis
easier to keep holidays than commandments.
- Benjamin Franklin
"Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish
peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit
- Calvin Coolidge
"Though Christ a thousand times in Bethlehem be born, If he's not born
in thee thy soul is still forlorn."
- Angelus Silesius
"He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree."
- Roy L. Smith
"Christmas is based on an exchange of gifts: the gift of God to man -
his son; and the gift of God to man - when we first give ourselves to
- Vance Havner
"Christmas is not just a day, an event to be observed and speedily
forgotten. It is a spirit which should permeate every part of our
- William Parks
"Christmas is a day that holds time together."
- Alexander Smith
"The simple shepherds heard the voice of an angel and found their Lamb;
the wise men saw the light of a star and found their Wisdom."
- Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
"God grant you the light in Christmas, which is faith; the warmth of
Christmas, which is love; the radiance of Christmas, which is purity;
the righteousness of Christmas, which is justice; the belief in
Christmas, which is truth; the all of Christmas which is Christ."
- Wilda English
"The Son of God became a man to enable men to become the sons of God."
- C.S. Lewis
"The coming of Christ by way of a Bethlehem manger seems strange and
stunning. But when we take him out of the manger and invite Him into
our hearts, then the meaning unfolds and the strangeness vanishes."
- C. Neil Strait
Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Clause
Editorial Page, New York Sun, 1897
We take pleasure in answering thus prominently the communication below,
expressing at the same time our great gratification that its faithful
author is numbered among the friends of The Sun:
I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
Papa says, "If you see it in The Sun, it's so." Please tell me the
truth, is there a Santa Claus?
Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the
skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except what they see.
They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their
little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's,
are little. In this great universe of ours, man is a mere insect, an
ant, in his intellect as compared with the boundless world about him, as
measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and
Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love
and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and
give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be
the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if
there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no
poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no
enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The external light with which
childhood fills the world would be extinguished.
Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies.
You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on
Christmas eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa
Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but
that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in
the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever
see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that
they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there
are unseen and unseeable in the world.
You tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside,
but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest
man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever
lived could tear apart. Only faith, poetry, love, romance, can push
aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory
beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing
else real and abiding.
No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives and lives forever. A thousand years
from now, Virginia, nay 10 times 10,000 years from now, he will continue
to make glad the heart of childhood.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!!!