We invite you to take a peek inside our Light for the Way devotional series. Each week we provide staff with an examination of a biblical reading to deepen our focus on scripture. Thank you for engaging with this series as we seek wisdom through prayer and reflection as a Christian Ministry.
By Pastor Chris Wheatley, Senior Director of Pastoral Care Programming
“In the fullness of time, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as children. And since you are children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, ‘Abba! Father!’ So that you are no longer a servant but a child, and since a child, through God, you are an heir.” —Galatians 4:4-7, NIV
It probably isn’t a deep revelation that Christmas is about family. Whether we’re talking about families getting together for favorite foods and gift exchanges, a phone or video call across the miles, or even a cozy night within the household, the celebration of Christmas, both secular and faithful, centers around that most basic social unit.
Even the details of the story we tell center on newlyweds and a birth. It is God being born among us, helpless and in need of his parents’ loving care. From its origins to our own celebration just a week ago, Christmas is about family.
But in today’s reading from Galatians, we are reminded that the most important family in the Christmas story is not one of biology, but one of adoption. That Christ’s birth was a miracle all on its own. But that is not why we remember it today. We celebrate Christmas because Jesus invited us to be part of God’s family, too.
We were born into the human race, separated from our Creator by sin and rebellion, created in God’s image but kept apart. In his time among us, God’s Son called us to be reborn as children of God, just as truly as he was. To have the same relationship with God that he did and does. To call God our Abba, our Father, as well.
And that’s important to remember at Presbyterian Homes. I often hear people talk about their site by saying, "We’re like a family." I respectfully disagree. We are not "like" a family. We ARE a family, joined together as the adopted children of the same heavenly parent, and the work we do is caring for our own.
So as the 12 days of Christmas continue, remember why we celebrate. The baby born at Bethlehem is your brother Jesus, and his birth gave you a new life.
More selected devotionals in the Light for the Way series:
Waiting for the Light: a winter solstice reflection
Optage Senior Dining Choices: Delivering meals and hope
Committed to reconciliation
Introducing Light for the Way, a new devotional series
In addition to Light for the Way, you can find reflections, devotions, music and other resources on the Pastoral Care website.