Did you get your most desired gifts for Christmas?
On Christmas Eve, I went to a local retailer to pick up some last minute items. As I checked out, the cashier wished me a “Merry Gift Day.” I was a bit surprised in that I had a similar wish a month earlier when this same cashier had wished me “Happy turkey day.” I had shared why I would not be celebrating “turkey day” but Thanksgiving Day.
Because no one was in line behind me, I asked why “Merry Gift Day”? The cashier replied, “Well that’s all it’s about, people wanting gifts.” How sad, I thought not because of the sentiment but because that is what people tend to think about Christmas. After a bit of friendly dialog, I was surprised when the cashier’s said, “Have a merry Christmas” while giving me my purchases.
On Christmas morning, the station manager called to ask if I wanted to do a live broadcast for my noon program. Without saying I was in the midst of preparing dinner for about fifteen relatives and friends, I agreed to. Unsure how I’d approach the broadcast, I understood some listeners would be preparing dinner for family and friends as I, some would be on the road traveling or still opening gifts while others could be preparing dinner for only one if preparing dinner at all or facing the first Christmas since losing a loved one. For a few, the only live voices they would hear that day were those on the station. I remembered the cashier’s first words and found myself agreeing but not for the same reason. Christmas represents gift day. So I titled the broadcast “Gifts
About 2000 years ago, Love gave us the perfect gift, not wrapped in expensive paper with a fancy bow but wrapped in swaddling clothes. And because of that Gift, we have life…which in itself should be cherished as a very precious gift, for where there is life there is hope. The eighteenth century English poet Alexander Pope wrote “Hope springs eternal in the human breast.” How often might we have given up on individuals, relationships, and situations had it not been for hope? No matter how dreadful or desperate yesterday was, we tend to hope for a better today and an even better tomorrow. So hope is also a very precious gift. Romans 5:5 says, “And hope makes (us) not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”
Although I appreciate the wrapped tangible gifts, I realize they cannot compare to the intangible gifts Christ gives, if we are willing to accept them. In addition to life and hope, He gives faith beyond the view of human eyes, peace surpassing understanding, joy in the midst of sorrow, forgiveness in spite of the trespasses and much, much more all wrapped in unspeakable love. Oh what wonderful gifts!
Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift…II Corinthians 9:15