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EMELDA Musonda.

Let’s not abuse Christmas Day celebrations

TODAY being Christmas Day many people are in their best celebratory moods.
Many already have plans cut out on how they are going to spend this day.

Fridges in homes and eateries are extra-ordinarily stocked with all kinds of foods and beverages including alcoholic ones.

Some people are hosting braais and parties at their homes and have invited family and friends.
Others have opted to go out to some places to have fun.
On a day like this one, hordes of young people patronise shopping malls all in the name of celebrating Christmas.
In past years we’ve heard of how people in the name of celebrating Christmas have engaged in undesirable activities such as alcohol and drug abuse and casual sex among others.
Unfortunately, others have ended up losing their lives from fatal road accidents.
For instance last year, 20 lives were lost during the Christmas period.
But the question is: what is the essence of Christmas and how should it be celebrated?
Christmas is not just any other holiday which can be celebrated in whatever way one feels.
Christmas is centered on the birth of our Lord and Messiah, Jesus Christ.
And as such Christmas celebrations should reflect the values and principles of Jesus Christ.
This is for the simple reason that He is the reason for the season.
John 3:16 says “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
Christmas is therefore a time to celebrate God’s gift of love to humanity through the birth of Jesus Christ.
After the first man Adam sinned in the Garden of Eden, man was separated from God and was condemned to death.
Titus 3:3-5 says, “For at one time we, too, were foolish, disobedient, misled, enslaved to all sorts of desires and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But when the kindness of God our Saviour and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not by the righteous deeds we had done, but according to His mercy”.
The birth of Jesus Christ and his subsequent death reconciled man back to his creator and gave him a second chance to escape eternal punishment which he was condemned to, after he sinned.
What this means is that man now, unlike before, has an option to either reconnect to God the father or remain separated.
The connection comes by accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour.
This is why Jesus said to one of His disciples: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me”.
The birth of Jesus Christ was God’s manifestation in flesh.
While the enemy of humanity, Satan, came to steal, kill and destroy, Jesus came that man may have life in abundance.
There is therefore every reason to celebrate this important day.
However, celebrating this day without acknowledging Jesus Christ as one’s personal Lord and Saviour is like attending a birthday celebration of a total stranger.
There is much more to Christmas than just merry making.
Unfortunately, the desire for merry making seems to be the overriding factor for many people today.
We have people celebrating Christmas and yet they have never even seen the inside of the church.
We also have so many people who proclaim to be Christians yet they are still separated from God.
Let this Christmas be an opportunity to reconnect back to God by simply accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour.
For those Christians, who were once connected and have since backslid, let this be an opportunity to restore their relationship with God.
If one does not have a relationship with Jesus Christ celebrating Christmas is meaningless and a mere entertainment activity.
As we celebrate today do we truly appreciate the birth of Jesus Christ or are merely bent on entertaining ourselves?
The author is Zambia Daily Mail Editorials Editor.