BLOG – The Gospel according to the Grinch

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

This devotional was written for Oakland's Family Advent Workbook. The hope is that our children couldn't think about the Grinch without thinking about Jesus. We don't want to reject all the secular trappings outright, we want to trace them to Jesus' life, death, resurrection, and reign.

Find time to read or watch How the Grinch Stole Christmasas a family. Then take some time, maybe over cookies and milk or hot cocoa to chat about Jesus.

How did The Grinch remind you of Jesus or a Bible story?

Why did the Grinch hate Christmas?

Why did the Grinch do mean things?

Why do you do mean things sometimes?

What does the Grinch expect to happen when the Whos wake up?

What actually happens?

How does the singing affect the Grinch? Why?

Have you ever seen someone celebrate/sing even when bad things happen?

What does the Grinch do when his heart changes?

What does the Grinch learn about Christmas?

What is Christmas all about to you?

Every good story is good because it echoes the one great story of God’s rescuing love in Jesus that changes our hearts. In How the Grinch Stole Christmas, the Grinch hates Christmas because his heart is 2 sizes too small. A bad heart leads to bad actions (stealing Christmas) and even delights in the pain caused by bad actions. This gives us a picture of Sin. Sin is a heart problem, a heart that is all about me and what I want. All the bad things we call “sins” are really symptoms of Sin, the heart condition. We all need Jesus to change our hearts.

When the Grinch steal Christmas, he expects the Whos to cry and boo-hoo, but instead they sing. The still celebrate Christmas because, “Maybe Christmas doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas… perhaps… means a little bit more!”

All who have come to know the true meaning of Christmas can celebrate even when bad things happen. Even when bad things happen, Christians can celebrate because God is good, and at Christmas God sent his son to rescue us. Even if we have no presents under the tree, we can celebrate the present given on a tree – Jesus on a cross.

When people see us celebrate Jesus at Christmas more than the lights, ribbons, bows, and boxes, they will learn the true meaning of Christmas, and their hearts will change like the Grinch’s heart changed. Especially, when we invite them into our celebrations.

Family Advent Devotional

Download a Family/Kid Advent Devotional Book

Hey Gang,
So I’ve never found anything quite like this. It is an Advent Devotional Book for families with young kids. If you have young ones and you’re trying to find a way to teach them the Christmas Story and get them asking good God questions, this might be helpful. If you have one of those chocolate Christmas countdown calendars, maybe you can read this before you open the chocolates and then discuss the questions while you enjoy them!!

It was designed and written by the church I attended in college, Lake Forest Church. I’d recommend printing it out and stapling it together, since the layout is all wonky in PDF view.

Merry Christmas!

Here is what Mike, their Pastor had to say about the book on his awesome blog:

Last Sunday we handed out a daily Advent devotional at the Kidtropolis check-in stations and I offer it today for your use.  It is primarily geared for parent(s) to lead their child(ren) through, as a user-friendly way to be in God’s Word daily and focus on Jesus this December.  But I am using it as my daily devotions this season personally, and want to invite you to as well.

The authors of this devotional guide are Aron Gibson (our kick tail WestLakeForest pastor) and Tracy Grubbs (our self-named ‘Creative Arts Chick’ at LFC – I allow people to write their own job titles). There are two things I like most about it:

  1. It models for us that our daily engagement with God’s Word doesn’t have to be exhaustive, long, or exhausting to be meaningful.  Sometimes a brief focus and prayer over a single verse has more sticking power for the day, and in the heart, than reading a whole chapter. And that can be done in a few focused minutes.
  2. They chose an Ignatian approach to a family devotional, by making one simple statement about each Bible reading, then posing a question or two.  Parents, this is tutoring you in how to be a ‘spiritual director,’ or shepherd, to your child.  Use the questions as starting points, let your child and yourself explore them, and gently turn them to consider God’s presence in their lives that day.

I’m asking the LORD to gift me with a more child-like heart this Advent season as I follow this guide.  Thank you Aron and Tracy.

You can download the LFC Advent Family Devotion here. Note: Because of how the booklets are set up for our printer, this download will not have the dates in order. You’ll just have added family bonding time searching for the dates as a first step 🙂 (also we will have a few more to handout in Kidtropolis this Sunday)