10 Things You See Everywhere On Christmas That Have A Profound Meaning
With Christmas around the corner, you’re sure to see traditional decorations everywhere, as part of the celebrations. But have you ever wondered how these little symbols of the season are connected to the true spirit of Christmas?
Here’s a lowdown!
1. The Star
Hanging from windows or sitting pretty on Christmas trees, the star is one of the most familiar symbols of the festive season. It represents the bright star that appeared in the sky at Christ’s birth and led the Wise Men to Jesus.
2. The Wreath
The green foliage and the circle represent everlasting life. It also represents the crown of thorns worn by Jesus at the crucifixion. As for the holly, legend says that the berries on this plant were originally white, but that the blood Christ shed stained them red forever, which is why they’re now a common Christmas decoration.
3. The Christmas Tree
Before they became a Christmas symbol, fir trees were a part of pagan celebrations of the winter solstice. Being evergreen, they were seen as a sign of hope for the spring to come. Thus, it became natural to choose the fir to represent Christ through whom the followers believe to have everlasting life.
Bells were part of the Jewish high priest’s garb, so it is fitting that they should announce the arrival of baby Jesus. They also mark the beginning of the holiday season, a time for joy.
Mistletoe, believed by the Druids to be an aphrodisiac, is a very ancient symbol of virility and fertility, and therefore standing beneath it is like basically saying you’re sexually available.
One story connects the hanging sprig to the Goddess Frigga, whose son was killed by an arrow made from the plant, and so she proceeded to cry tears made of white berries. Her tears brought him back to life and so she blessed the plant, promising to kiss anyone who walked beneath it.
It’s Christmas connotations, though, are more metaphorical, stemming from its parasitic reliance on its host tree. Just like the mistletoe, our lives too are derived from God’s love.
According to the story, St. Nicholas (The man who inspired Santa Claus) overheard the woes of a poor local man, who had three daughters and couldn’t afford their dowries. To save them from a life of prostitution, Nicholas crept down his chimney on Christmas Eve and dropped gold coins into the stockings drying by the fire.
The poinsettia plant originates from Mexico. The shape of the flower resembles a star, like the one that led the Wise Men to Jesus. Red poinsettias again, symbolize the blood that Christ spilled for us. White poinsettias symbolize purity.
Tinsel is the thin, metallic strands that are used in Christmas decorations. A popular story tells of a poor family who had no money to buy decorations for their Christmas tree. In the night, spiders came and spun webs across the tree. Then the Christ Child, honouring the family’s faith, turned the threads into silver and gold.
9. Candy Canes
Around the 17th century, Europeans adopted the tradition of Christmas trees and began making special foods to decorate them with. The sweet treat apparently represents the shape of a shepherd’s crook that Jesus, the Good Shepherd will use to bring back the lost lambs back to the fold. The red stripes represent his sacrifice and the white stands for his purity.
10. Gingerbread Man Cookies
Gingerbread cookies are intended to remind us of when God created Adam in the Garden of Eden from nothing — and therefore, his creation of all of us.
Think about that the next time you bite into one!
KEEP IN TOUCH!
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