Once again we pause amidst the noisy rush of life to celebrate the birth of Christ our saviour.
Despite the commercialisation of the modern Christmas season with all its stresses and strains and expense, for those of us who believe the scriptures the birth of Christ still represents hope and promise and renewal.
We still believe in the miracle of the Son of God, born of a virgin in a lowly stable, and that the child born that night long ago is God’s most precious gift to mankind.
That He was called wonderful, counsellor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.
That He, out of supreme love, would suffer a brutal death on a rude cross at Calvary to save mankind from sin. That is the essence of Christmas.
That is why we give each other gifts at Christmas as God gave us the most precious gift of all, His Son, Jesus Christ.
It is so easy, so very easy among all the challenges, excitement and hype that surrounds the Christmas season for us to forget the true meaning of Christmas.
This Christmas I urge you to pause for a while to truly reflect on God’s love and what Christmas really should be all about. For many, Christmas will not necessarily be a particularly happy time this year.
But if we truly understand and appreciate the meaning of Christmas, in the midst of our own troubles, we can still have cause for happiness, we can still have peace and we can still demonstrate our love for others.
Yes, I know this year has been a most difficult and stressful one for many people, perhaps for most of us here in Cayman.
Many of us have lost loved ones, many are ill, some of us are unemployed, many are undergoing very challenging financial circumstances, finding it difficult or impossible to pay bills, many have even lost their homes. Things are tough, times are hard, perhaps as hard as most of us can ever remember. But we should not, we must not, we cannot lose hope.
Things will get better. Whatever the challenge, whatever the difficult circumstance, we must believe: This too will pass.
This Christmas let us give thanks for the blessings we do have.
This Christmas let us think about the many that are less fortunate than we are and let us make a special effort to bring a bit of Christmas cheer to as many of them as we can. Although we may not have a lot ourselves, there is always something we can give, something we can do to brighten the lives of others.
It may be a food basket, it may be a few dollars, it may be a visit to someone who is shut in, perhaps it’s just a smile or a cheerful word.
Reach out, touch someone and in so doing you will be following the precepts of Jesus Himself who told the following story recorded in Matthew, Chapter 25:
“Then the King will say to those on His right: Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.
For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in.
I needed clothes and you clothed me.
I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.
Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me’.”
Do whatever you can this season for another person in need and you are sure to feel much better about yourself and your life, and your Christmas is bound to be richer and more satisfying.
I wish for each of you a happy and blessed Christmas.
Leader of the Opposition