Growing up there were only 5 people in our family. However, when it came to Christmas lunch we had to set the table for up to 20 people each year.

My mother has the biggest heart in the world and she never wanted anyone to be alone for Christmas. So she would invite them all to our house.

We had the couple who had moved from overseas, a number of residents from the nursing home whose families were busy, the gentleman who had just gone through a divorce, the grandma who couldn’t travel to visit her family… there was always someone different at our Christmas table.

When I was younger I often felt a bit miffed that these people were intruding on our special day. But as I got older I realised my mother was actually teaching me the real meaning of Christmas.

God loved each person so much that he gave His own Son. The least we can do in response to this love is to give up a seat at our Christmas table.

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This article was written by Linda Bailey

Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.