December 14, 2016
When my children were young, they spent a lot of time poring over the Sears or JC Penney Christmas catalogues, circling exactly what they wanted for Christmas. They made sure to show us, their parents, what they had circled, so we would get them just the right thing. I know they didn’t receive everything they circled. Our budget certainly didn’t allow for that.
I recently witnessed much the same occurrence with two of my grandchildren. The source of the gifts changed; this time it was the Target ad and a particular website. Again, they made long lists of what they wanted for Christmas. Knowing their parents, my children, I’m sure they won’t receive all those gifts either.
The anticipation of Christmas gifts—and the often heard phrase, “What I want for Christmas is...” could lead us to think that Christmas is all about receiving just the right gift, and for us parents and grandparents, all about buying just that perfect gift for our children or grandchildren, and so fulfilling their wishes.
But we know Christmas is so much more than that. Christmas is about the most perfect Gift, the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. It often seems that the true meaning of Christmas gets lost in all the external trappings of the season. When families gather around the tree on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning, the excitement revolves around those gifts waiting to be opened.
Maybe this year we could take a few minutes to reflect—before we open those gifts—on why we’re gathered around the tree. Maybe we could sing a Christmas carol or two. Maybe someone could read the Christmas story from Luke 2.
And, if the little ones will wait just a few minutes longer, here are a few devotional readings that we at Today would like to share with you. Maybe you can take the time to read one of them, and offer a prayer of thanks for that baby who was born to save us all—the most perfect Christmas Gift.
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