This is the time of year that the shopping drum beat goes on and on. Go out and buy, Buy, BUY! Shop until you drop mentality. The more, spent precludes how much you love someone.
This used to stress me out so much! Not having a lot of extra money to spend outside of Christmas was hard enough. But feeling obligated to spend for gifts was so much harder. I sitll do not have a lot of money, however these days, during this season I find I am not as stressed.
So what changed? My perspective changed. My heart changed because I growing in Christ. For years I had this idea that I could only show my love through how much I spent on them. What I realized is that gifts come in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes a gift is wrapped up in pretty paper or placed in a cute bag with tissue paper fluffed out over it.
Sometimes a gift is an act of kindness or of friendship. Perhaps it is your time or simply giving a token. The best part of gift giving is seeing the look on a person’s face. It is a look of gratefulness, of being remembered.
A few Sunday’s ago, my Pastor spoke about the three wise men who searched for Jesus. Bringing him gifts to worship him, leaving behind all they knew to bring Him gifts. Gifts that would enable this small family to escape to Egypt. This is something I have never considered before. I think of all the gifts that God has blessed me with over the years. The things or people that came into my life to enrich it.
One such gift put me on track for getting healthy,when a friend offered to be my personal trainer. leading eventually to running a half marathon. Another was a gift of a desktop computer which enabled me to pursue writing. Later it was a gift of a laptop which has furthered making my dreams become real. I could go on and on, because as I think of one gift, yet another comes to mind. Each one enabling me to become the person that God wants me to become.
Gifts which have I have easily forgotten in times of selfishness.
As we prepare for Christmas, let us rest in the greatest gift of all. The hope that Jesus’ arrival gives us all. Let us not forget this gift in the midst of this season of shopping. When we give gifts let it be from the heart. Let us not become lost in the cost of things. Let us simply rest in the hope of Christ.
The meaning of gift giving for me is to show those I love that I care for them. These days though it’s less about how much I spend and more so that I want them to feel loved.