In my home the days after Christmas are spent cleaning up so we can enjoy our new presents. This year was no different. The inside decorations have been put away and as I look around there is very little evidence that our home was recently a winter wonderland packed with the magic of Christmas. Except for maybe the presents. New gifts always serve as reference points for this season. Most of us are either enjoying our new gifts or… thinking of exchanging them. My children love theirs… until something newer comes along. But I don’t think they are alone in these feelings; I go through the same emotions. I believe that is the reality of the human heart.
This is not a minimalist approach. I know the new shiny object will eventually fade. Soon what I was so excited about was just something new that I wanted to experience – a new toy, new gadget, new tools, new clothes, you name it. A new gift grows old and dusty as other things catch our eye and rob our attention. That is why my focus this year was different.
The perfect gift is still available
As I’ve grown older I’ve experience more joy in giving than receiving. Maybe it’s because I’ve realized there is really nothing that truly satisfies my need. But it’s also because there is true fulfillment in seeing someone unwrapping a gift that makes your heart jump with anticipation and joy. This intentional perspective also allowed me to experience the true meaning for the season: the birth of a savior.
Jesus was quoted in the Book of Acts with one of the most popular sayings:
It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
It is only fitting that the God of the Universe would gives us a glimpse of true joy by giving His only son as payment for our redemption. The gift of salvation wasn’t just a saying that could catch our attention like a celebrity tweet. No, the gift of salvation came in the form of a man who would die for all humanity.
Christmas is not a beginning, but a becoming. Christ was not created; He came. God sent God to rescue us.”
David Mathis (Desiring God)
The best gift of Christmas is always fulfilling and never grows old. It’s a gift available to all.
If you were left disappointed with what you received, or have grown bored with what you unwrapped from under your tree, know this: the gift of Jesus is the gift that keeps on giving. It won’t make life perfect but it will give you perspective and purpose – allowing you to see others around you while helping you prioritize on what is important. In truth it is the gift of never-ending love and everlasting joy.