Gift giving has never been a strong force in our child/parent relationship. In fact, tangible, extrinsic gifts fall low on our love language priority. Claire prefers acts of service (feeding the worms) and Rusty words of affirmation (What a wonderful father you are!), far more than a new sweater or a necktie.
The boys, however, are eager to open any package offered to them. Since they were babies, we have continued a Christmas tradition that began over two thousand years ago. This spiritual custom prevents wasteful, impulse shopping and unnecessary accumulation of stuff.
The Gospel of Mathew tells of the Magi traveling from the East and giving the Christ child three gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. The wise men set the precedent; the boys anticipate the same. Every Christmas wish list is kept short and the gifts under the tree from Santa (A.K.A God) total six.
We could implement the time schedule set forth by the Bible. The Magi gifts arrived two years after the birth of Jesus, but we have a feeling that might not go over too well.
We are ever mindful that The True Gift given to the world was God’s best. He gave his only Son, to the wealthy and the poor, the young and the old, the African and the New Zealander.
As parents we recognize this sacrifice. It is so challenging to even consider giving our boys to anyone, especially knowing they would be treated poorly and crucified in the end.
As Christ followers, we and the boys are thankful for the gift of Jesus Christ who has forgiven us and granted us eternal life. May your Christmas season be filled with the love, hope, and joy of Jesus.