December 8, 2011
I’m afraid my blog this time won’t sound really witty and I suppose it could even be judged as a bit sappy, but it is what came to my mind today. I was reviewing my shopping list for Christmas, as well as reviewing another list that both my wife and I have. Just this Tuesday my mentoring group was discussing how each of us handles shopping for Christmas gifts. Some like it and spread it out, some shop online only and get it done in one evening, and a few were perennial last-minute Christmas Eve shoppers. As we shop for Christmas gifts it can sometimes be a challenge to figure out what to get, figure out what we can afford, find the time to go get said gifts, and then fight the crowds when we get to wherever we are going.
Yes, shopping for Christmas can often be a challenge, but ultimately it can be easier to shop and give a gift than it is to give love (sappy portion begins here). Giving love requires a whole lot more from us than many of us feel we can afford to give away, because giving love means we ultimately have to give a commodity that can only come from our hearts. If Jesus is our example, then that means giving love includes self-sacrifice, acceptance, discomfort, no partiality, vulnerability, etc.
Think about it. To stand up and boldly declare that "Christmas should be about giving love not gifts!" sounds really good and could even get you a few amen’s and may deliver you from having to go shopping at the mall, but be careful, it’s easier to shop and give a gift than it is to give love Jesus-style.
Of course the ultimate Christmas gift is the gift that has been given in love. Well that's the goal anyway.
May God bless you this Christmas with the opportunity to give and receive a lot of gifts given in love.