The white snow, the lights and the cheerful music all enhance the experience of fervently shopping for the perfect gift for those on our lists. Then comes the anticipation of the moment of presenting our gift and watching our loved ones unwrap them, which is nothing short of breathtaking. It’s only when their face lights up as the Bethlehem star that we know we have picked the right gift or not.
With Christmas being known as a time of giving of gifts. It should also be a joyous time of the year, yet so often it can be stressful and exhausting. To many people are caught up in the rut of frantically trying to find that perfect gift for that special person, which will express our feelings toward them. Yet, if we are honest with ourselves we know we have all given and also received imperfect gifts haven’t we?
Jesus is Lord of all, and the faith He demands involves unconditional surrender and allegiance. (tweet)
In 1999 “USA Today” published a survey that revealed what adults say they do with that not-quite-right holiday gift.” Well, 31% keep it, 30% hide it, 13% toss it, 12% give it away and 6% return it. It’s a dilemma we have all experienced.
But, before we chuck the whole holiday lets go back to the familiar passage in Matt 2 where the Wiseman come and present gifts to the young Jesus. As they arrived at the place they fell down and worshiped Him. The wise men came from the East crossing many different lines to get to Jesus…countries, religious, ethnic and political. Finding Him they presented Him with gifts of Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh. These gifts were appropriate for they express the very essence of who Jesus Christ is.
Gold carries obvious worth. It’s precious, worthy across all cultures and times. It’s a gift fit for royalty. It was a fitting gift for Jesus who is the Supreme sovereign Lord. In Revelation 19:16 it declares that written on His vesture is “King of Kings and Lord of Lords”. What will you give Christ as your King this Christmas? As King He deserves your allegiance, and demands your subjection to His authority. Jesus is Lord of all, and the faith He demands involves unconditional surrender and allegiance.
The second gift the wise men gave the child Jesus was frankincense. Frankincense was the ceremonial incense of the Jews and was part of a compounded with four ’sweet scents,’ pounded together in equal proportion. It was considered holy incense, which honored God. As the Holy One, God Incarnate, what will you give Christ? We owe Him our worship, our praise, our adoration.
The final gift of the wise men was myrrh. In ancient times, the red-brown resin of myrrh was used to preserve mummies and in embalming. The infant child was born to die. He was born to be the sin bearer – the sacrificial Lamb of God who would take all of our sins upon Himself that we might have eternal life. What will you give Christ as your Sacrificial Lamb – your Savior . As Savior we owe Him our lives and our all. In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 Paul writes, “…ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price…”.
This Christmas let us follow the wise men’s example and give Jesus gifts appropriate for the King of Kings, a Holy God and a Sacrificial Lamb. He deserves our gift of worship, our surrender and our life. He is the reason for the season.