by Pat McIntosh

For me, Christmas is not about the gifts or the food and I place no spiritual significance on the
occasion. It is about family. Our jobs and schools usually provide us ample opportunity to get
together and enjoy the holiday season together. We get to see our family members that we don’t
get to see as often as we like. We have memories of home and cherish the relationships we have
built over the years together. We all look forward to being together and enjoying the time

It is sad to see that many do not share the same sense of closeness and enjoying time together in
the Lord’s church. It is a joy to be in a congregation where this sense of family love is enjoyed. I
have been in places where this was not the case. Rather than being a family unit, such
congregations are simply a collection of different units that do not share the bond that God and
His Son intended when the church was established. The early church serves as a great example.
In Acts 2 we see that these people spent time together every day. I know that distance and our
schedules make this difficult today. However, we can emulate the close bond that those early
Christians realized.

As Christians, we share a bond that those in the world will never realize. We have a relationship
that is based upon what has been done on our behalf and what is promised to those found faithful
in the judgment. We share a home here, and the promise of an eternal home that will be beyond
compare with anything we have experienced before that point.

May we grow closer to one another as a family unit. We can laugh together and, at times, cry
together. The bond is made possible in Christ. Its realization is up to us.

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