Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Another Christmas has come and gone. The packages have all been opened. The bags (and bags) of trash have been taken out to the curb. You may have even had to stand in a return line or two. Christmas enters with a roar and exits, it seems, so quickly and quietly that you almost miss its leaving.
I have been thinking today about all the gifts that are exchanged at Christmas. It's precious to be able to give tangible things to your children that make their little eyes shine and their tiny hearts jump for joy. Gabbie and Luke, my two oldest, are both at the stage where they are basically pleased with anything that they are given. You don't really have to break the bank to get a great reaction.
There is the joy of giving and the joy of receiving. I'm reminded of how the Bible tells us that God, our Heavenly Father, loves to give good gifts to us. James 1:17-18 states, "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created." Jesus himself said that it is more blessed to give than it is to receive (Acts 20:35). In the context of the his great Sermon, Jesus says, "...if you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him" (Matthew 7:11).
Can you imagine the joy that God has over filling your life with "good gifts"? The happiness that we experience when our children say "thanks" is but a pail shadow of the eternal joy that God has when we genuinely appreciate our eternal treasures. It is very sad how quickly we forget that the gifts we receive from God are the most precious and greatest gifts of all.
Take some time right now to say thank you to God for the gifts He has given to you.