Mon., Nov. 28, 2016
Matthew 2:11: On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.
Presents are a HUGE part of Christmas. Did I say huge? Yep.
Over the years, my view on Christmas presents has changed. After living overseas for a year and seeing many people who truly had needs, Christmas gift-giving often seemed extravagant to me. Let’s be honest. How many people will you be challenged to pick out a present for because they have everything they need? And what do you buy someone who has everything?
This Christmas, let’s look at gift-giving differently. Let’s prepare a present for the One whose birthday we celebrate! At other birthday parties, we give gifts to the birthday person. Why should Christmas be different?
For the next four weeks, I encourage us to daily prepare Jesus’ birthday present. It’s really simple. Just take a box or a basket and this becomes the box that will hold the birthday present. Then, take a look at the Advent Devotional I shared yesterday. On every day between now and Christmas, there is an item listed. Yesterday was tuna. Today is mac and cheese. Each day, put that item into your box or basket. Along with food, some hygiene products are listed. If you don’t have an item in the house, be creative! On Christmas Eve, take your basket to Christmas Eve worship or the local food pantry. This becomes your family’s present to Jesus.
I’m so excited to see the boxes of food appear at the churches I serve on Christmas Eve. I can’t wait to see all the boxes be presented in honor of Jesus’ birthday. And truly, I believe these are the kinds of gifts he loves.
Dear Jesus – We’re sorry that too often we forget your birthday present on Christmas. Forgive us for not making this a higher priority. Inspire us to think creatively in preparing a present for you this Christmas. We know you will take the presents we present, bless and anoint them and use them for your kingdom. Amen.
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