Monday, December 24, 2012
Why should we give gifts if not out of appreciation? Because God gave the greatest gift to us. Because money is really worthless when placed next to that gift anyway. Same reason as God gave us his son: they were made in the image of God, however broken that image now is. It's not like we earned that! Why do you give gifts to those whom you appreciate? Do they have to earn your appreciation? Then they are earning your gifts to them, and those are not gifts! Therefore, this is what a gift means from a Christian: "Remember the gift God gave? The one by which you may be saved? I just couldn't help myself, I know I can't give a gift like that, but this is a picture. I just wanted to be like Christ so much, and this is what I could give of myself." See in that small gift the total giving of Christ for us to save us from our sin. It is like a little child, seeing that his mother is making pie he goes outside and makes a pie in the mud. That is what our gifts are: pies in the mud imitating the real pie which is the gift of Jesus who saves us from our sins. You can't eat a mud pie, but it at least reminds you that there are real pies. So with our gifts: they do not save, but they ought to be a reminder of the gift that does. They are worth little, but they ought to remind us of the gift whose worth we cannot comprehend. And that gift, the one which saved us, was not met with "Oh! That's just what I've always wanted!" But more often with "Oh... um... thanks." followed by checking for a receipt--there is none--then by throwing it back in God's face. But it is met, by ever so few, with "Oh! I can breath! My heart is pumping now!" For it is the gift which brings life, even if some treat it like an ugly sweater. And that is the gift your gift points to, however pale the comparison.
Posted by Ben Bush at 9:03 PM