Christmas did not happen so we would celebrate Jesus’ birth.

Then the high priest stood up before them and asked Jesus, “Are you not going to answer? What is this testimony that these men are bringing against you?” But Jesus remained silent and gave no answer.

Again, the high priest asked him, “Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed One?”

“I am,” said Jesus. “And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.”

– Mark 14:60-62 (NIV)

Christmas is in the air!

Stores are decked out, lines are long, parking lots are full, homes are decorated and kids are making their lists. Without a doubt, this is one of my favorite times each year. With all the warm fuzzies that come with this season, it’s healthy for me to stop and remember the real purpose of Christmas: Jesus’ Mission.

Christmas did not happen so we would celebrate Jesus’ birth.

Jesus’ birth happened so this innocent baby could live an innocent life and die a horrible death for guilty people. This is a pretty sobering thought in the middle of the pretty lights, the carols, the bows and stockings.

Near the end of His life on earth, Jesus was arrested and put on trial.

When He was asked if He claimed to be God, Jesus said, “I am.” Knowing He was in for a death sentence, He could have tried to talk His way out of it. He could have snapped His fingers, and a legion of angels would have delivered Him. He could have made excuses. Yet He did not.

Jesus made no excuses, although He had plenty of good ones.

  • This is gonna hurt … BAD!
  • These people aren’t worth the trouble.
  • This is going to be humiliating.
  • I’m God, I shouldn’t have to put up with this!
  • I won’t get to finish watching this season of Jerusalem Idol.

Many times, we are full of excuses when it comes to fulfilling our mission (especially this time of year).

  • We are too busy.
  • We need more family time.
  • It’s not in the budget.
  • People may not respond.
  • We might be persecuted.
  • It’s too hard.
  • We’ll miss our favorite TV show.

Don’t let Christmas become an excuse to neglect the mission.

This Christmas season, remember the mission Jesus fulfilled without any excuses. Use His example as motivation to fulfill your mission during the holidays.

Alan Danielson is the Senior Pastor of New Life Bible Church in Norman, Oklahoma. Previously he served as Central Team Leader for LifeGroups at in Edmond, OK, where he led over a thousand small groups on LifeChurch’s thirteen campuses in six different states. He then founded to help leaders master three essential leadership skills: vision-casting, creating strategy and fostering relationships. Alan is a popular conference speaker and consults regularly with ministries and leaders on topics relating to small groups and leadership. Learn more from Alan at

More from Alan Danielson or visit Alan at

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