(This Week: Smart Christmas Shoppers.)
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Someone whom you weren’t expecting gives you a Christmas present and you have nothing to give them back but, “Thanks.”
Smart Christmas shoppers can try this as well. Find someone who is not expecting a present of any kind - be it a gift certificate, something they love but could not afford, a simple visit or an extension of some kindness.
“You shouldn’t have” or “I wasn’t expecting this!” are the reactions that will ring your Christmas chimes.
This strategy is one of the most exacting portals to heaven for the giver and receiver because it is a metaphor of the first Christmas.
When Jesus came as a baby, from a nowheresville-town and as an adult with no place to lay his head, the folks of his time couldn’t have been more surprised at the wrapping paper and the gift inside. But it was more than the package that shocked their religious senses.
Jesus’ messages to forgive innumerable times, to live life from a relationship rather than rules and to be secure in his Father’s love were the ultimate I-wasn’t-expecting-this.
While all of us can get trapped into giving from the outside, it is at this time of year that smart Christmas shoppers ask God to show them how to give from the inside-out.
Whether you hear it or not, the reaction will be similar to first-century receivers.
PORTAL TO HEAVEN: Presents bought in heaven are the best and sometimes the most unexpected of all. It’s the very heart of the Baby God. Extending forgiveness, grace and mercy are not on everyone’s Christmas shopping list. But they should be. Who will be surprised by your heavenly gift?
Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering…
Colossians 3:12 (KJV)
On Messiah-goers not knowing Messiah...
How sad to be enamored with the Creator’s handiwork and miss the Creator!
Frank Wray, Delmar, NY