“the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” (Acts 20:35b)
When shopping for gifts at Christmastime, we encounter tricky questions. What is it they really wanted? What will make the kids eyes light up? What do you get for the person that has everything?
Actually this last question is interesting because the only person it could apply to literally is God. Could there be wisdom in exploring an answer to that question?
God is the greatest giver of all time. The presence of Christmas on the calendar is the result of the most wonderful act of gift-giving in history. Jesus is the greatest gift imaginable–grace for life, peace with God, salvation. Jesus is not only a gift to be received–to fill the longings of our hearts. More than that, He is a gift that compels a response: Giving our hearts and lives to him. So, what do we get the One who “has everything”? What does he want? What God wants for Christmas is you.
Here are a few tangible ways to give ourselves to him. We certainly cannot repay him for the gift of salvation, but we can get caught up in His spirit of giving. What would you add to this list?
Ideas for God’s Christmas Wish List:
- Our Stewardship. Give, but resist the temptation to go into debt if that is a temptation for you.
- Generosity to the Poor. Give generously, especially to those who have little. Gifts through our Angel Tree at church and through Christian organizations like the United Methodist Committee on Relief (www.umcor.org) and World Vision (www.worldvisiongifts.org) serve the poor and help advance the gospel.
- Our Relationships. I read a good piece of advice on child-raising recently that applies well to Christmas: “Spend twice the time and half the money.” Make lasting memories with family and friends.