Keep Christ at the Center
The world has a strategy for dealing with Christmas. That strategy is to bury the true message—that God sent His Son to save mankind from our sins—in an avalanche of muted messages.
There is nothing wrong with “peace” or “goodwill toward men” or giving gifts to family and friends. It is only when these secondary aspects of Christmas are allowed to cover up the true meaning of Christ's coming that we become concerned. Contrary to the theme being advanced by a number of shopping malls, “it's all about giving,” Christmas is all about Jesus.
Some argue that using Christmas to focus on the historical Jesus and His claims upon our lives will cause disruption and disunity at a season when the “proper” thing to do is to promote unity and peace with all. Such thinking is skewed. It places temporary cessation of conflict between men as a higher value than true peace with God. Christ must be first and foremost in our celebration of Christmas; otherwise it is not really Christmas. The celebration has simply become, as the public schools often call it, “Winter Holiday.”
The effort to bury Jesus in tinsel has its analogy in the home-schooling movement. There are voices who loudly complain that any inclusion of Christianity in a home school organization is divisive and a source of disunity. But for genuine Christians, Christ-less home schooling is no more appropriate than a Christ-less Christmas.
The reason my wife and I have been home schooling our children for the last ten years is not simply to provide them with a good academic education. Nor is our central purpose to achieve a better balance of parent and peer interaction. Our purpose for home schooling is to raise godly children. Academic achievement and proper social development are the extra gifts under the tree. We home school to develop Christ-like children. How can we advance this goal if our home-schooling actions and activities are “non-sectarian” in character?
“Keep Christ in Christmas” is a popular saying. And in these days of hard-sell advertising which reduce our Savior's birth to a giant marketing strategy, it is a valid point to remember. But it is equally valid to remember that if you want to raise godly children, you need to keep Christ at the center of your home schooling all 365 days a year.
Michael P. Farris