As I look under our Christmas tree this morning there are all these boxes and bags wrapped in shimmering golds, greens, and reds. Just seeing the tree with its lights reflecting against the luminous gifts makes me long for Christmas. I remember the years our children ripped through presents with little regard for the paper or boxes, or that one year we all wrapped our presents in butcher paper and decorated them with magic markers. A 1992 study indicates that our anticipation and enjoyment of a gift increases when the sender takes time to wrap our present.
Last night I attended a Christmas concert and was moved by a statement made from the stage – “the greatest gifts are wrapped in a person.” My mind immediately rushed back to my mom baking chocolate spritz cookies at Christmas and our family gathered around the television to watch “It’s a wonderful life.” My greatest Christmas memories are all wrapped in the people I love.
God understood this long before we started wrapping presents and putting them under a tree. The greatest gift ever given to mankind was wrapped in a person. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:1, 2, 14).
God wrapped salvation, hope, and eternal life in a person. “For God so loved the world that he gave us his only begotten son that whosoever believes in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life”(John 3:16). Every time I open the pages of the gospel I am moved by how the hand of God was revealed in human flesh.
- It was Jesus who looked upon the multitudes with compassion because they were as sheep without a shepherd (Matthew 9:36).
- The man Jesus who healed blind Bartimaeus as he was leaving Jericho (Mark 10:46-52).
- The man Jesus who cried out in anguish and pain as he said, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me” (Matthew 27:46).
The writer James reminds us, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change” (James 1:17), and in every case, God’s gift is wrapped in a person.
As I heard those words, EVERY GIFT IS WRAPPED IN A PERSON, I immediately turned my thoughts to the greatest gift I could give to a child this year. Helping a family means that more children get to spend the holidays with mom and dad both present on Christmas morning. Investing in strengthen marriages and families means you wrap your gift in a person, you invest in another’s life, you change the future of a child and transform a culture.
Please join me in supporting Live the Life as 2018 draws to a close. This is your chance to invest in saving and preserving a family in 2019:
- $25 will buy workbooks for one couple to attend a workshop.
- $99 will strengthen one family by putting them through Adventures in Marriage.
- $900 will provide a scholarship for a couple in crisis to attend a Hope Weekend workshop.
- $3,000 will provide direct marriage intervention through a one on one marriage intensive with a couple with the most extreme marital need.
This Christmas please join with each us at Live the Life as we strive to follow the example of our Father and wrap our Christmas gift in a person. DONATE HERE!