your prayer request
When I was a kid I would eagerly open
a Christmas present only to find a pair of socks. Now, perhaps
someone out there genuinely enjoys getting socks for Christmas.
I would say that such a person, like the apostle Paul, has learned
the secret to being content in all circumstances!
Now I suppose I should hasten to add
that it was not my parents who usually gave me socks – more
like an aunt or cousin (revenge?) or an adult friend of my parents.
I think the socks were usually red.
Well, when it comes to gift-giving
most of us take much joy in finding something meaningful for those
special people in our lives. However, one writer confessed that
according to his wife, he buys Christmas presents that are spontaneous,
expensive, and not particularly useful! He thinks that is her
kind way of saying that his gift-buying is poorly planned, overpriced,
and unhelpful. He says that she has learned not to hope for great
things when she unwraps her present from him.
In utter contrast to such an approach,
the gift of Jesus was definitely not poorly planned and unhelpful.
In fact, no greater gift has ever been given! And his coming was
planned in eternity past and prophesized over the centuries until,
in the fullness of time, he appeared (Galatians 4:4).
No wonder Paul exclaimed, Thanks be
to God for his inexpressible gift! (2 Corinthians 9:15). Or as
the New Living Translation puts it: Thank God for his Son –
a gift too wonderful for words!
Well, I do love Christmas! I enjoy
the lights, the trees (especially the decorated cactuses), the
luminaires around the lake near our house, the Nativity scenes,
and the music…
Ah, the music! Not the radio and department
store ditties, mind you. But rather songs like we sang and heard
Joy has dawned upon the world,
Promised from creation.
God’s salvation now unfurled,
Hope for every nation.
Not with fanfares from above,
Not with scenes of glory,
But a humble gift of love,
Jesus born of Mary.
Yes, he’s the gift I celebrate
this season (and all year round for that matter). It’s true:
There’s no real Christmas without Jesus.
I’m sure we all have our favorite
Christmas songs. But you can’t do better than Mary’s
song of praise in Luke 2: My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit
rejoices in God my Savior (v.47).
As Mary rejoiced in her Savior, so
do we! For Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever
Max Lucado has written: “Salvation
is God-given, God-driven, God-empowered, and God-originated. The
gift is not from man to God. It is from God to man.”
And what a gift we have in Jesus! Pause
now and give thanks for him. Hallelujah, what a Savior!