“Oh, satisfy us early with Your mercy, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days!” Psalm 90:14
Are you among the one-twelfth of the world’s people blessed with a December birthday? I am.
Maybe it didn’t feel like a blessing when you were growing up. Maybe you’re glad now to just let it slide by unnoticed. In either case, having a December birthday means sharing your one-and-only “me” day with a whole lot of other busyness.
For the rest of the population, please let me explain. Those of us born this month get gifts wrapped in red or green paper…maybe silver as an alternative. That’s if we’re fortunate enough to get birthday presents. Some December babes just get combo gifts—from lazy folks who buy only one gift instead of separate ones for Christmas and birthday.
Birthday parties? No one wants to watch someone else open presents, especially after Christmas. Nobody wants to eat more sweets, like cake and ice cream. Lots of folks leave town or have other parties to attend. Woohoo.
Does that sound like whining? Sure does. It’s how I felt in younger days…until I realized that every birthday is a celebration…not to be the center of attention, but simply to revel in life itself.
Today, I have no justification for complaining. My loved ones have always worked hard to make my birthday a special, unique time for me. This year, friends have treated me to lunch, before and after Christmas!
And, celebrating doesn’t have to be done in December. Two of my sweet friends always honor me in January. One of my best birthdays ever was observed in November at an “Operation Christmas Child” party—all the invitees brought me shoeboxes filled with toys and gifts, ready to be shipped by Samaritan’s Purse to needy children around the world!
Having a December birthday means you get to make your own traditions. Mine has become going out for Chinese food…I like to read all the fortune cookie messages and turn them into predictions for the coming year!
The best message, though, is found in Psalm 118:24: This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.Every single day brings reasons to exult in the abundant life we enjoy in Christ. Rejoicing isn’t optional…it’s a commandment, a daily exercise in a sacrifice of praise, designed to give us thankful hearts lifted up to our Creator.
I’m reminded of a dear friend and pastor, Dr. John Richard de Witt, whose birthday was on December 25—he was delighted to have the same birthday as Jesus Christ. He found joy in being born on “the very best day in the whole year,” and now he is rejoicing in heaven’s eternity with his Lord.
If Dr. de Witt were still here, he would challenge us Decembrists to unite in joy! It’s a huge privilege to have the same birthday season with Jesus! We have the best birthdays, the best reasons to be thankful.
If you don’t have a December birthday, make a special effort to wish a happy day to those of us who do. I’m grateful for every one of those greetings! Happy birthday, December babes! Happy birthday, Jesus!
O Father, the One who has created us and planned every moment of our life since the day we were born, thank You for the gift of Jesus Christ and the privilege of celebrating His birthday at Christmas. Help us to live every day in celebration of Your love for us, regardless of the season or day! In the name of Jesus Christ, whose birthday we honor, Amen.
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