A Season Of Giving
by Maggie Geene
used with permission
This is the time of year when we all begin to think about what we are going to get. After all, "Tis the Season". To balance that we are also reminded at this time of year that "it is better to give than to receive". But we must first learn to be givers. One way to learn is by example. To learn to be givers we should look at the Giver of all things; God. Not just God the Father though, but God in all three persons of the Blessed Trinity.
The Father's Gift
The most important gift God gave us the precious gift of life. To each and every one of us He gave a special and unique gift of our own life. We are the one species in all of creation who are capable of appreciating the amazing fact that we are alive. God gives us this gift freely and without reservation, because in conjunction with our life he also gave us free will. Without life, free will is meaningless. We can choose to honor Him for the gift of life we have been given, or we can choose to ignore God's part in our life. And whether or not we honor God he still loves us completely. From God the Father, we learn to give something that is special and unique to the receiver.
The Gift of Jesus
God gave us His only begotten Son. And that gift wasn't the gift of a ruler or leader in the political sense, but the gift of God with us, a humble teacher and redeemer that changed the lives of everyone who came after him. This best gift, Jesus, showed us how we can all learn to love His Father, by giving to others. He gave all he had, even his life for us. In everything Jesus did, his entire earthly ministry is based upon giving to others. Nothing he did was for himself. From Jesus we learn to give without thinking about the cost, or expecting anything in return.
Gifts of the Spirit
Jesus, before he left His earthly ministry offered us the gift of the Holy Spirit. This gift is God working in our lives. The Holy Spirit offers us gifts and fruits which help us to appreciate and enjoy the gift of life given to us by our father. How many of us could live a full happy life without wisdom, or joy, or patience, or goodness, or self control? The Holy Spirit's gifts are freely given, ongoing and never ending, we can call upon them whenever we feel the need to use them. From the Holy Spirit we can learn to give of ourselves. We can learn that more precious to someone than that perfect sweater, might be the gift of our time, and our concern for their lives and their struggles.
So what is the best way for us to commemorate the greatest giver of all during this season of giving? By giving each other the latest CD or video game? Or by giving ourselves to others? This year try to think of one thing that you can do that will truly help others. Give of your whole self. Don't just give your money, but give time, and resources. Work one day a week in a soup kitchen, or thrift shop, volunteer at the Hospital, or Boy's and Girl's Club. Find the name of a shut-in who belongs to your church and go and visit that person. Find that one special and unique gift that will have very special meaning for the person you are giving it to. Give all with a joyful heart, asking nothing in return.