Our church, as well as hundreds of others across the land, will designate a day - or a special service when we give Christ a gift for His birthday.
I often wonder how He feels when he sees a nation spend over $600 billion on gifts - lavish gifts to family and friends. How would you feel if someone threw a party for you, and everybody showed up and exchanged gifts with one another?
This Christmas season, I am challenging my church to give to a particular ministry, a church camp in East Texas, that has touched tens of thousands of people for the past 55 years. We will have a special candlelight service, and bring our offerings to the altar, to be our “Gift for the Savior.”
You may ask, “How does He receive it? Does He bodily show up with his hand outstretched? He could if He wanted to, but there are indicators in scripture which reveal what Jesus enjoys as gifts. In John 17, Jesus prays to the Father concerning the gift(s) God has given to Christ. “I pray for. . . .them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.”
Those gifts which God has given Christ are those who have believed in Christ for eternal life. It is hard for me to fathom how Christ could be delighted to receive someone like me, as a gift. But He is.
Think with me: How can you get in on God’s gift-giving program to His Son? Well, for one thing, when you give to others — particularly the needy, or those who cannot repay you, scripture says Christ is the recipient.
The Apostle Peter only had a cup of cold water to offer someone in the name of Jesus. But it was a gift which pleased the Savior.
Scripture says, “[...] Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” Matthew 25:40. Proverbs 19:17 says, “He that hath pity upon the poor, lendeth unto the Lord; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.”
It seems that when we meet the needs of others, it is an acceptable offering to Christ. There are many practical ways to give to Christ; be involved in a food drive which targets the poor; Give a special gift to anyone who cannot repay — i.e. purchase Christmas gifts for underprivileged children.
The next time you are at a drive-up window, pay, not only for your order but purchase the order for the car behind you. Do something anonymously for someone. Give an extra special offering to your church.
There are many ways to give to the Savior during this Christmas season. And if you want to know what He wants for His birthday, you can’t go wrong by giving to your church, to those who minister to you, or to causes which promote the gospel.
And scripture reminds us that Christ is delighted when you meet the needs of people.