The Gift God Gives
Previously we talked about the gifts we can give. Today we talk about the gift that we can receive.
It is the type of gift that we can’t repay. It is the type of gift we can never forget. The type that changes everything.
And it is offered to every single person. With no exceptions. To you and me. To our neighbors. To the people we like and the people we don’t like. To those who don’t deserve it and those who think they do.
It is a gift of hope. A gift of life.
I always wake up before dawn. The sky is dark. The air cold. My alarm shrill.
I am a reluctant morning person. When I was younger I always slept in. But then life became busy. Days filled with the necessity of busyness.
That was when I discovered the silence and solitude of the morning. And started choosing to wake up.
I struggle to take the first, unsteady step out of bed. I struggle turning the bathroom light on knowing how intense the stimulation will be. But once I get going, once the water from the shower rinses my face, I grow in anticipation.
Every morning I sit in darkness and watch as the sun rises. A daily miracle. A gift that fills me with hope.
God give us sunrises. He gives us mornings. And he gives us Jesus.
He gave us part of himself. His only son. His co-creator. A partner in crime of sorts.
When Jesus came down, he gave up being only divine and became human. He gave up heaven as his home and then moved into our neighborhood. How did his skin contain his being?
This gift came at a cost. The cost of leaving heaven and becoming man. Of feeling hunger and thirst. Fatigue and sorrow. At times loneliness. And of course, pain.
And then God gave up his son’s life, letting him die at the hands of people. At the hands of us.
Somehow, in ways I can’t comprehend, the loss of one life gives life to all.
And those are the few things we actually know about the gift. This is our limited understanding. I don’t doubt there is more. There is a greater cost that we have yet to know.
But without this gift, everything would be different. Hope would be like the early morning fog. When the heat of the day arrives, it would melt away.
What We Can Do with the Gift?
With a gift so great, what should we do?
We can live.
The life we are given isn’t only meant for some day after we die. We are given life now. The kingdom here. All around us. And in us.
We can celebrate. We can breathe. We can create. We can laugh and smile. We can do more.
And we can share the gift.
Not share it as in trap people on airplanes and tell them their life needs to change. That they need to make better choices.
Not share it as in stand on street corners and tell people that God is angry with him. If he is angry, why would he send this gift?
But to share it in the same way it was offered. Out of love. Unconditional love. To offer it as a gift that does not, and cannot, be repaid.
To love as we have been loved.
We simply get to receive it and enjoy it. And share it. And that is enough.