I saw this on Facebook this week…
I always enjoy a good oxymoron: ‘jumbo shrimp,’ ‘only choice,’ ‘random order,’ ‘awfully good’ and ‘all alone’ are just a few. (Some say ‘adult male’ is the ultimate oxymoron!) In my opinion the biggest oxymoron of the Christmas season is ‘gift exchange.’
Is something really a gift if it is exchanged? The altruism of gift giving is lost in the concept of an exchange or obligatory transaction.
The wise men brought gifts – expecting nothing in return. And the Father gave his only Son irrespective of our response. No exchange – just a gift.
If we try to participate in a cosmic gift exchange, we will never win. We have nothing to exchange; we cannot provide enough in return to earn God’s gift. Paul reminds us, For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)
This Christmas give gifts — exchange them if you like; but remember that the greatest gift was the one freely given and the one that we can never earn. We have nothing to exchange; we can only receive the gift of God’s Son.
What a great reminder for us this Christmas season! I hope you’ll join us on Sunday mornings as we continue our God With Us series. This Sunday, our preschool and elementary school children will be leading us in some Christmas. Have your cameras handy, it’s gonna be cute!