Tuesday, December 22, 2015

The Gift of Christmas

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights. James 1: 17a
It is the season of gifts. Early morning shopping, boxes tucked under the welcome mat, finding forgotten gifts stashed in the back of the closet, wrapping in secret, and piles of brightly decorated boxes under the tree. This year our family went high tech and posted wish lists on Giftster.  When the larger family of siblings and cousins meet we have gone to drawing random gift cards out of a basket for a unique Christmas surprise.  I am certain the wise men had no idea what they started with their gold, frankincense, and myrrh. 

While we work to make Christmas about decorations and ribbon it is truly about the perfect gift from above - the king who became a baby. Christmas is about His sacrifice and our salvation.

The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. I Timothy 1: 15

I cringe when I hear about elf on the shelf watching to see if children are naughty or nice. It is such a strange twist to the Christmas story that we tell children to earn their gifts and fool ourselves into thinking we deserve ours. While the elf on the shelf makes for family fun and cute pictures on social media, it represents a completely backward version of the Christmas story.

We do not deserve this perfect gift. The perfect gift brings us eternal life that is absolutely undeserved. The perfect gift is Grace crying in a manger, Grace walking among us, Grace hanging from a cross. The perfect gift does not come wrapped. The perfect gift wraps His arms around us. 

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. I John 3: 1

And so we are. 

Blessed in Grace.