If you want to know about a person, ask them this:
“What did you GIVE for Christmas?”
I started asking children this question years ago, and I love to hear them answer! “For my daddy, I got him a new hammer and some peanuts. For my mommy, I got her a pot holder that I made myself!”
You can learn a lot about a person by finding out what (and to whom) they give.
You hear who is important to them. You find out what their priorities are. You can see joy in their faces as they describe what they chose to give to the people they love.
Over the years Kim and I have found that we don’t need any more STUFF. We have enough STUFF already. We have chosen to give the people we love EXPERIENCES.
We give them season passes to the science museum – or Sea World – or a family trip. We would LOVE to take our entire family on a cruise somewhere that we can experience together – but that’s going to take a bit more financial planning!
There are very few “things” I remember receiving for Christmas or my birthday, but I remember the experiences. The few gifts I do remember receiving meant something more because of who gave it, or what we did together with it. It is the relationship that made the gift important.
What does Jesus want for His birthday? He really doesn’t need a “thing”! God owns it all, anyway!
What I can give Jesus for His birthday is the same thing He gave to us – time. Relationship. A listening ear. Love. The scriptures tell us stories of Jesus stopping to listen to a man who was born blind. He looked around and saw Zaccheus up in a tree. He spent time with a woman in Samaria that no on else would give the time of day.
Jesus’ death on the cross should have been of no surprise to those who knew Him best. Jesus was willing to do whatever it took to let someone know that He cared about them. He took time to connect with people one-on-one.
Give Jesus a gift this year. Look around for someone whom everyone else ignores, and spend time with them. Look them in the eye. Listen to their story. Let them know that they matter.
Merry Christmas –