I will confess, in just a little while I will be going out to do some last-minute shopping. Yes, I know it’s going to be hectic and crazy out there, especially if any Black Lives Matter protesters plan on clogging our local mall. Nevertheless, the shopping has to be done.
Fortunately for me, I am not on a mission to buy a bunch of stuff for everyone on my list; all I need to do is find a couple of things for a couple of people, and that’s it. The only other things I may buy today are a cup of coffee and stamps (yes, there are going to be some late Christmas cards this year).
The Perfect Gift
But this whole shopping thing got me to thinking: will we ever find the “perfect” gift? So often people spend hours and hours navigating traffic, long lines, websites, and clearance racks trying to find a gift that is just right, one that is just “perfect” for the recipient. Color, size, flash, style, and price all play a part in trying to determine how the gift will be received – will they love it or hate it? Who knows?
Unfortunately, because of the stress of it all, much gift-giving has been reduced to whatever is on sale or the ultimately non-personal gift card. The fact is that the “perfect gift” is an illusion, or a sign, rather, that there is something just beyond our grasp – the real perfect gift.
You see, here’s the thing: the only “perfect gift” has already been given; all other gifts pale in comparison. Jesus – the meaning of the season – was the Perfect Gift from God to man, making all other gifts mere reflections.
Seriously, what other gift can compare to the One that was delivered in Bethlehem?
- He was given at the perfect time (Galatians 4:4);
- He was wrapped like no other gift could ever be (Luke 2:12; Philippians 2:7);
- He was exactly what everyone in all the world needs (Luke 2:11);
- He was the greatest expression of love the world would ever see (John 3:16; 1 John 4:9).
There’s nothing you’re going to find at any mall or specialty store better than what was already given two thousand years ago. Our search for the “perfect” gift is nothing more than a sign – that there’s always something better, something that can’t be purchased, something only grace can provide.
Have a merry Christmas!