9 Symbols to Help You To Remember the Meaning of Christmas. Christmas decorations are fun, but they help us remember the reason for the season if we pay attention.
It struck me one night. I was almost asleep and this poem just came to me.
I couldn’t fall asleep–the poem just kept nagging at me. I told myself I would write it down in the morning, but a voice in my head said I wouldn’t remember this in the morning. It had to be done now.
So I sat up, grabbed some paper, and began to write. The whole thing was down in minutes.
I am by no means a poet–I am a technical writer! It really just came to me and I am so glad I did.
This is something I can use to teach my children about the symbols of Christmas.
Christmas decorations are fun and bring beauty and ambiance, but they are so much more than that. With Christmas decorations, there is meaning behind each traditional decoration:
by Valerie L. Plowman
Red reminds of the blood He spilt
to wash away and cleanse all of our guilt
White is for His actions, most pure.
Through sinless perfection, He did endure.
Green is for the life eternal
we can obtain through our Lord supernal.
The star shines like the one so bright
that twinkled above that first Christmas night.
The fir tree is for many things:
the tree of Jesse–the father of kings,
and for the needles pointing to the Lord–
that little babe we all adored.
The wreath shows one eternal round;
the begin’ of the Lord cannot be found.
The lights remind us that this babe
is the light of the world, and born to save.
The candy cane is for the crook;
not one sheep or lamb the shepherd forsook.
The Christmas bells we love to ring
proclaim joy! The birth of a newborn king.
These symbols remind us that we,
more like the three wise men all now should be.
Earnestly seeking to find the new babe
who humbly in a manger laid.
Christmas Symbols Explained
The poem explains it in a poetic way. Now lets explain it in a technical writer way.
The color red represents the blood Jesus Christ shed for each one of us.
The color white represents purity. Jesus Christ was perfect with perfect actions and perfect intentions.
The color green represents eternity. Through our Savior, whose birth we celebrate at Christmas, we can all have eternal life.
The star represents that first star that appeared as a sign of the birth of baby Jesus. This is the Christmas star. This star let the Wise Men know the Savior of the world had been born. It is often referred to as The Star of Bethlehem.
Candles are also a representation of the Star of Bethlehem. They light our way as the star lit the way for the Magi, or Wise Men.
A Christmas tree represents the tree of Jesse. He was the father of King David. Jesus Christ came through that line. This genealogy is often depicted in Christian art in medieval times.
The fir tree also has needles that point to the heaven above.
Evergreen trees are important because they are green year round; as we talked about above, green represents eternity.
A wreath is a circular shape. Circles are often used to depict eternity because it never begins and never ends.
Notice that so many of the symbols use the evergreen. We have the trees and the wreaths as well as the garland that all uses evergreen. We are always reminded of that eternal life and that immortality is a reality.
Christmas lights remind Christians that Jesus Christ is the light of the world. His presence brings light even in the darkness.
A candy can reminds us of the shepherds. It is shaped like a shepherd’s crook. The humble shepherds were the first to meet the new baby.
Christ is also often referred to as the Good Shepherd. Shepherds do not forsake their flock, and neither does Jesus Christ.
The red and white colors of the candy can are a strong reminder that we have been saved by one who was perfect.
Christmas bells are as the angels who came to proclaim the birth of the new baby, born to save us all.
The Wise Men traveled far to greet Jesus Christ. By the time they got to him, he was no longer a baby. They brought with them gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. These were all expensive and rare gifts.
They fell to worship him and offer their gifts.
When we give gifts, we are as the Wise Men.
Gifts can also remind us of the ultimate gift of the birth of one who would save us all.
Holly has not always been a Christian symbol, but today it represents Jesus Christ.
Holly’s red berries remind us of the blood of Jesus Christ.
The leaves of a holly plant are pointed and symbolize the crown of thorns placed on Jesus’ head.
Not all decorations are representations of something sacred at Christmas. There actually isn’t really a real reason mistletoe is used in decorations for Christmas today.
Tinsel actually is an homage to spiders. There is a legend that when Mary was fleeing Harod’s troops as they sought to kill the young Jesus, Mary took refuge in a cave.
While there, spiders spun silk to seal the entrance. The soldiers saw the opening covered and deduced no one had been there. Of course this is legend and was not shared in any scripture.
A Christmas bow is supposed to symbolize unity. It shows us that we should all be tied together in acts of service and goodwill toward each other.
A yule log actually originated in Norse tradition. It was used to celebrate the sun starting to return after the winter solstice.
As you go through your Christmas celebrations this season, take a moment to reflect on these symbols of Christ and how they point us to the reason for the season.
Christmas cookies, Santa Claus, reindeer, the North Pole, elves, a sleigh, and Rudolph are all fun, but do not let them distract you from the purpose of the holiday in the first place.
- 5 Ways to Keep Christmas Christ-Focused
- Top 20 Family Christmas Movies to Watch With Your Kids
- Family Christmas Traditions: 17 Fun Traditions Children Will Love
- The Symbolism Behind Your Christmas Decorations
This post originally appeared on this blog in December 2009