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Caught Between 'Bah, humbug' and 'God bless us, everyone'

When preaching at Christmas is a chore.

Caught Between 'Bah, humbug' and 'God bless us, everyone'

Around June of every year I get this uneasy feeling in my stomach. Christmas is coming. Again.

I'm not crazy about Christmas generally and I admit to a bad attitude about preaching in December. Ebenezer ("Rock of Help") Scrooge and I have some things in common. Each December I feel caught somewhere in a no-man's-land between Scrooge's "Bah, humbug!" and Tiny Tim's generous, "God bless us, everyone!"

I've preached Christmas-season sermons for more than 30 years—well over a hundred sermons. As a rule, I don't like to preach the same thing more than once. So you see my dilemma. I know what they say: "Just preach the old story of Jesus' birth. People love to hear it." Maybe, but telling an old story and preaching an old sermon aren't the same thing.

I feel like I am competing with the Christmas heavyweights that my sermons have to go toe-to-toe with—George Bailey, Charlie Brown, Taylor Swift, the Mormon Tabernacle ...

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Displaying 1–3 of 3 comments

Rick McGinniss

November 17, 2015  5:30am

Great article - lots to think about and rejoice over!

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J.T. Haney

November 16, 2015  4:36pm

Lee, to add a bit of historical spice, so to speak, perhaps you might read Revelation of the Magi as translated by Brent Landau. A truly fascinating test. There are those who may scream "Heretic, Heretic" at you if you so much as mention it strictly because it is not from the Bible. But I will tell you that it is one of the most interesting of the many, many books my voracious mind has delved into. God's peace to you and yours!!

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Warren Charlton

November 14, 2015  6:10pm

Lee: You are always thought provoking but heart warming with a taste of reality that wakes me up. I am too much into my study of 1 Thessalonians to have thought of Christmas, but now, thanks to you, the stomach juices have begun to flow. However, to his throne I go again for his grace to help me in time of need. And when do never not need his grace. Blessings of the Lord at this Season!

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