Three Wrapped Christmas Presents
Matthew 2:11 - And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
Several years ago, I heard a sermon about how God prepared for Christmas. Beginning with Mary and Joseph, the preacher told how Jesus’ people, birthplace, language, and culture were prepared. He brought out some interesting historical things that I'd never considered before, but his final point is what hit home to my heart: God gave us His best; am I giving Him my best?
This pastor brought 3 men to the front and gave them each a beautifully wrapped gift and had them open them. The first man found a Nike shoe box with only one shoe in it, and that one shoe was old and worn out, with no shoelace. The second man opened his gift, only to find a nice men's necktie that had been cut in half. The third man looked in his gift bag and found one glove; a nice glove, but only one. As each man opened his gift, the preacher was telling him what a nice gift it was, but we could see they were either worthless or not the best he could have given. And that was the point - am I giving Jesus gifts that are useless or only the leftovers of my life?
As that message hit home in my heart, I realized that we get so caught up in trying to buy gifts and fix food and have parties that we give Jesus only the bare minimum of what we could give to Him - and it's even His birthday we're celebrating! How would I feel if people came to celebrate my birthday and brought shabby gifts for me, but gave each other beautiful gifts and had my party without more than an occasional glance tossed my way? This isn't something new, but it sure touched my heart that night. I don't want to give God my second best, especially not at this time of year. The wise men opened their treasures and presented Him with valuable gifts – their treasures. Let's give to God from our treasure instead of tossing Him whatever we have left over of our hearts and lives.