Did you ever have that one relative who, instead of picking out a Christmas gift for you, gave you money to go buy your own?
I’m not talking about someone who sends you a card with some cash in it (although this post essentially applies to that as well). I mean more like the person who lets you buy your own gift, wraps it up, and gives it to you on Christmas day.
If you’re the person in the family that did this, don’t worry – this is not a critique of your gift-giving methods. The fact that you’re able and willing to give anything at all is a generous act of love.
In fact, a lot of people would prefer that Christmas worked like this altogether.
If only we could just buy the gifts we wanted specifically! As a kid you might dream about getting a $1000 shopping spree to pick out all the gifts you wanted. No more socks and underwear to disappoint you under the tree.
We think the same thing about our spiritual gifts as well. If only we could have helped God decide what our gifts would be! We could have exactly the life we wanted. (I would have asked for a little more musical talent to start with.)
But we don’t get to choose our gifts in life. That’s why they’re called gifts.
A real gift is something someone picks out with just you in mind. The best kind of gifts are the type we wouldn’t necessarily buy for ourselves but are altogether perfect for us.
A real gift has thought and consideration put into it. These are the types of gifts we cherish, the ones that mean the most to us, the things we would have never thought to buy ourselves but that we needed all along.
This is exactly what God does with our spiritual gifts. They aren’t necessarily the things we would have chosen if we were in charge.
But God puts in the time and the effort to craft them specifically for us. And as we go on we find that they are exactly what we need.
The next time you wish God would let you have exactly what you wanted, remember the words of Isaiah 55 which remind us that His thoughts are not our thoughts and His ways are higher than our ways.
Be thankful for your gifts this Christmas season – especially the ones you would never pick out for yourself.
What do you think makes a gift really a gift? Leave a comment below and join the conversation. And be sure to subscribe to Pop God to follow along with The 12 Blogs Of Christmas!