With COVID-19 cases still on the rise, many holiday gatherings and traditions have been cancelled this year. How would you feel if a decision was made to skip Christmas altogether this year? What if throughout the world, Christmas would be cancelled? No decorations, no Christmas trees, no Christmas carols, no gifts under the tree. None of the excitement that this time of the year typically brings. How would you feel about that? What exactly would you miss most? Give your students a few minutes to freely verbalize what they would miss most about the holiday; there are no right or wrong answers here.
The importance of Christmas is communicated in a lot of different ways. Let’s take a look at two different videos and identify the messages that they communicate about Christmas. As you watch, think about any ideas and messages about Christmas that you hear and see from the video.
Share video #1 [3:27]:
Michael Bublé – It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas
- What ideas or messages about Christmas did you see and hear as you watched the video? (Accept all reasonable answers. Students may have a lot of responses—you can list them on the white board or screen shared document as ideas are shared.)
This second video also communicates messages about Christmas. Think about any ideas or messages that this video shows.
Share video #2 [1:51]:
Linus explains the true meaning of Christmas
- What messages about Christmas did you hear on this video? (Accept all reasonable answers. You can write responses on the white board or screen shared document.)
Even though both of these videos are about Christmas, they obviously have very different messages. We know that the story of Jesus coming to earth as a baby is the reason we get to celebrate Christmas in the first place; it should always be our primary focus as we walk through the Christmas season.
- Are the messages from the first video bad? (Allow students to respond. Some may say that the focus of Christmas shouldn’t be on the “stuff” like decorations, gifts, and Santa. Others may share that the traditions of Christmas add to the spirit of the holiday and help us focus our minds on Jesus. Accept all reasonable answers.)
Think about the children around the world who don’t have Christmas trees, lights, or gifts. That first video about Christmas wouldn’t have much meaning for them, would it? But the message of the second video means everything to everybody! The Christmas season is filled with countless messages that communicate various ideas about Christmas. Some of those messages do a great job of pointing people to the true reason for celebrating Christmas, while others focus on us. In today’s lesson, we’ll take the story of Jesus’ birth and go beyond the facts of the story to see how the true message of Christmas is important for everyone to hear.