Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift. (2 Corinthians 9:13)
Happy Christmas Eve! As we finish the flurry of preparations and put out the cookies for Santa, Christmas morning is just one sleep away. All the shopping is done, cooking is underway, and now it is time to give and receive gifts. Most of us can remember gifts we have received, whether it be from our childhood, or meaningful gifts received by loved ones over the years. As we grow, our definition of what makes for a meaningful gift changes. We begin to steer away from materialistic needs, and find beauty in cards with heartfelt messages, crafts made by little hands, and even the warmth of a hug from loved ones we do not see as often as we wish.
Gift-giving has become symbolic of love. Even the wise men made their journey to see baby Jesus with gifts in hand. As I listen each year to the retelling of Jesus’ birth, I cannot help but think of the sky that lit up with angels declaring to the shepherds that a Savior had been born. God had come to us. Could there ever have been a more significant gift?
The gift of Christmas is that it does not matter if you grew up attending church or have never been inside church walls. Jesus has come to be a Savior for each of us. All the gifts I have received in my life can be traced back to Jesus, the little baby who was born long ago. Gifts that include comfort, peace, love, and joy. The answers to my prayers, spoken and unspoken. During every season of Advent, I make sure that I take a moment to pause, to soak in the reason for this special time of year, and to say thank you to God for Jesus, the best gift anyone can receive.
For those with family, and those alone, this Christmas
Dear God, thank you for the best gift we can receive. Help us to remember that the gift of Christ is our most valuable, not just at Christmas, but for the whole year through. Amen.
Make Cinnamon Dough Ornaments: mix 1.5 cups ground cinnamon, 1 cup applesauce, ¼ a cup of white school glue. Roll the mixture out into flat dough, use cookie cutters to make holiday shapes, and then lay flat on wax paper and leave for 3-5 days.
Make Magic Reindeer Food: mix some dry oatmeal, and festive Christmas sprinkles together. “Sprinkle on the lawn Christmas Eve night, the moonlight will make it sparkle bright. As Santa’s reindeer fly and roam this will guide them to your home.”