The Presence of Christmas

By Linda Tancs

Christmas is a gift-giving season, as anyone knows. But in the hustle and bustle, we often forget that it’s not about the presents–it’s about the Presence (Luke 2:1-20). The Presence gives us many presents: gifts of love, hope, peace, joy and salvation, just to name a few. Enjoy His presents this Christmas.


As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES (a teaching and speaking ministry), Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith.

Rudolph’s Bible Lesson

By Linda Tancs

Remember Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer? Yeah, the one with the shiny and glowing nose. The one who was so different from his contemporaries that they shunned him. Nobody wanted Rudy as a playmate. But, oh, how things changed when Santa realized how Rudy’s bright, glowing nose could cut through the fog on Christmas Eve and get him where he needed to go (which was everywhere, of course). Then the other reindeer loved him, as the song goes. The “loser” was now a winner.

There’s a Bible lesson in this cherished song. To be sure, the favorable outcome for Rudy shows how others’ harm can be worked out for good by God (Genesis 50:20). God refreshes and restores, as Psalm 23 reminds us. Rudy’s victory tasted sweet, like a banquet presented to him before his foes (Psalm 23:5).

Recall some of your favorite holiday songs and see how many biblical lessons you can find!

The Brightness of God

By Linda Tancs

Christmas is the glorious season of light, a celebration of Christ’s birth, the Light of the World (John 8:12). As the vigil of Christmas nears, many of you will gather around a Christmas tree, long a symbol of salvation and eternal life. Candle decorations, in particular, represent the light of Christ. In some cultures, candles placed in the windows or along driveways (luminarias) served historically as a guide for priests on their way to evening visits during the season.

St. John Chrysostom reminded congregants in the fourth century that Christ’s mission in humanity was to replace the night and darkness with the light of salvation. ‘Tis the season, then, to remember that God is light; in Him there is no darkness (1 John 1:5-7). Let His Word be a lamp to your feet and a light to your path (Psalm 119:105). As you walk in the Light of hope, peace, joy and love, you’ll serve as an example for others to experience God’s goodness, faithfulness and mercy (Matthew 5:16).

Merry Christmas!