Ahh Christmas! This is the season of anxiety and depression for many people. You have read my fairly consistent commentary on the state of the economy and the problems it causes so many people. When people are swamped with debt the stress is compounded by factors of ten. Add debt or money problems into an already stressful family situation and some lose hope pretty quickly.
Christmas has veered far away from its original meaning for the majority of Americans, and with tough economic times many parents are having to scale back the gifting like never before. Add guilt onto the pile of stress...
Is it any wonder that even Christians head for the doctor or therapist with the complaint of depression or anxiety? Just try getting out of your doctors office without a sample of some medication "just to try" and see if you make it. Others promote support groups in addition to taking their pills to help those who are depressed or anxious. All these people looking for hope in all the wrong places! I cannot think of anything more unappealing than sitting in a group listening to sad miserable people recount why they are sad and miserable and being unable to talk to them about a way out of where they are!
What I would like to remind you of is that your hope does not come from a bottle or group therapy.
See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ. Colossians 2:8
The world says that Christ is not enough and that the Bible is fairy tales and a bunch of stories we poor delusional Christians use to placate ourselves. The methods of the secularist are philosophical (example: you never step in the same river twice), and full of empty deception (example: all pathways lead to God).
Philosophy means to “love wisdom” broadly speaking and when Col. 2:8 says “takes you captive”, it literally means to kidnap, or to carry you off as booty or spoils of war. That is the goal of this present world, to carry us off with deception. Satan knows he can never have our souls but he can ruin the productivity of our lives while we are here.
It is an imperative or command of Scripture that you and I do not buy into what the world’s wise philosophers are peddling. Often they offer Christ plus something else as necessary for salvation. They are deceivers and want you to believe that Christ and the Bible are not enough!
Do you believe Christ is sufficient? That word, sufficient, means enough. Do you believe He is enough? If not, why not? If not, where is His in-sufficiency? Exactly what is He not able to do? You see if you do not believe Christ is sufficient then you cannot expect to be helped because your unbelief is standing in the way. Christ in not limited by your beliefs- He is always sufficient but you must trust in His sufficiency for it to be active in your life.
There are concrete steps to be taken, and parts of your life that have to change- beginning with your heart. As your heart is changed through the working of the Holy Spirit through the Word of God you will begin to have new thoughts, beliefs and desires. As you begin to think differently you will begin to make different decision and choices that will affect every part of your life.
Christmas will take on new meaning and significance in your life and the urge to bury the true reality of the holiday under a mountain of debt buying stuff that people really don't need will fade. You will become content with less and less and the philosophies of the world will become meaningless.
You will have all of Christ, why bother with worldly nonsense?