The Christmas X-factor
In mathematics, X is used to represent an unknown value. The value of X depends on its place in a particular equation. For mathematicians, working with X in abstract algorithms is a common occurrence. For young children, the concept is too complex. It makes no sense to take X out of the alphabet and use it in Maths.
In dancing and singing competitions, judges are looking for the X-factor – the unidentifiable quality that makes one competitor stand out from the others.
As Christmas approaches, shops use tinsel, trees, stars and candy canes to give them the X-factor that will attract customers to their shop. Santa attracts excited children, waiting to tell him their heart’s desires, and parents pay for a photograph of their child with Santa.
We, and our children, are being enticed to focus on the latest toys and gimmicks, offered at slightly higher ‘bargain prices’ than at the ‘Buy Now for Christmas’ toy sale back in June.
Christmas carols are replaced by songs extolling love, peace and hope – which are important values, but the songs fail to mention the One who brings love, peace and hope to the world.
We see ‘Happy Xmas’ and ‘Seasons Greetings’ on cards and posters, but few, if any, reminders of the reason for Christmas. Jesus has become the unknown factor of Christmas.
A recent conversation on morning TV went something like this: ‘…prices of prawns and steak are sky high …more tax on beer…It’s like they are taking away our Christmas. What’s left?’
If we convert that question into a mathematical equation, the answer is Jesus.
Jesus – the human being who came to make God’s love for the world known to the world
Jesus – is the X-factor of Christmas.