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.

BLOG: The Gospel According to Frosty The Snowman

Here's an idea for worship on a snow day.

This devotion is based on the 1969 TV Special Frosty The Snowman. It is only 25 minutes long, so find time to watch it with your family and then discuss how Frosty points to Jesus. 

How did Frosty remind you of Jesus or a Bible story?

What makes Frosty different from other snowmen?

What does Frosty add to the children’s lives?

Who adds joy and fun to your life?

Why does Frosty need to get to the North Pole?

Why can’t Frosty keep Karen warm?

When Frosty has to choose between saving Karen’s life or saving his own, what does he choose?

When have you had to choose between what was good for you and what was good for someone you loved?

Does Frosty stay dead?

 

            Every good story is good because it echoes the one great story of God’s rescuing love for us in Jesus. Frosty echoes Jesus really clearly. First, Frosty comes to really live in our world. The world doesn’t know what to with him, but he brings life and joy to all the boys and girls who follow him on the parade. He loves the children who follow him and they love him, but not everyone loves Frosty, and Professor Hinkle wants to kill him for selfish reasons.

In the same way, Jesus comes to really live in our world and brings life and joy to all who will follow him, but many people chose not to follow him. Like Professor Hinkle, the Pharisees and Romans decide to kill Jesus for selfish reasons.

When Frosty heads north with Karen, the cold is good for him, but deadly for Karen. Karen needs to stay warm or die, but if he helps warm her up, he will melt. Frosty has to decide between dying to save the one he loves or abandoning his love to save his own life. He would rather die than let Karen die.

Likewise, Jesus could either avoid the cross and abandon sinners like us, or he could save sinners like us by dying on the cross. Jesus chooses to love us even when it means he must die. He trades his life for ours.

In Frosty, Santa shows up and brings Frosty back to life, explaining that he will go live at the North Pole till he comes again. When Jesus was unfairly killed to save us, whom he loves, he did not stay dead. God the Father raised him from the dead. Jesus is with God the Father in Heaven, but he too will come again someday soon to rescue us completely. Until then, we know that Jesus, like Frosty, would rather die than live without us.