The gift of giving

By Benjamin Budde - Contributing columnist

It is something special that on the day we celebrate the savior’s birth, the birthday of Jesus Christ, we give and receive gifts. I don’t know about you, but that’s the only birthday party I’ve been to where everyone gets a gift! Jesus said Himself “It is better to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35). This just shows me, in something so simple yet so great, how good God is to us! He loves us so much that we get gifts at His birthday party. The gifts are great, the toys and knick-knacks, but the one gift I won’t trade for the world is the spirit of giving and the love in the faces of people that comes during Christmas time. I love to think of all the great memories with family and friends that come from this season, which are stemmed from God giving us the virgin birth of Jesus Christ to save us.

All of the physical gifts are great, but we get the greatest gift of life if we choose to receive Jesus Christ as our savior. At Christmas time we hear many stories of giving, like the story of Saint Nick, who secretly put gold coins in shoes and threw bags of gold into windows or down chimneys. Because of his generosity we now have Santa Clause. I wonder if Saint Nick was following what it says in Matthew 6:3-4, “But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.” There is also the story “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens, who said, “The New Testament is the very best book that ever was or ever will be known in the world.” Not only do we get great stories, food, and songs, we get wonderful Christmas lights too! Matthew 5:16 “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” All of these wonderful Christmas things are in remembrance of God giving us a savior!

We easily see the life, love, and joy that comes from giving, but there is also another side of it. There is depression that can creep in when we feel like we don’t have anything to give, but I’m here to tell you, you do! God has given you meaning through Jesus Christ, that meaning is that you are somebody and you have something to give to others. God made you to be victorious and to be more than a conquer who can do all things through Christ who strengthens you. This gift is from God and is waiting for you to receive it through the Holy Bible, and what is great about this gift is that it’s not only available on Christmas Day. God’s presence is a gift for us to open every day! This gift is full of faith, hope, and love, with a divine purpose and plan for our life to find!

Some may want to change Christmas to X-mas and end the Christ in Christmas. That can’t happen though because the greatest gift of giving was at the cross of Jesus Christ! God gave us His Son to save us from our own demise and to give us the gift of life that comes through a relationship with Jesus Christ. He is the ultimate example for us in life, love, and relationships. His teachings are a priceless gift! If you feel you don’t have much to give, look to Jesus and you will have the biggest gift to give: the love in your heart. When this gift is received and given to everyone your around, they will light up from the joy of the savior’s birth. So why only remember the gift of the Savior once year? What if we brought the Savior Jesus Christ into remembrance everyday of the year? I think we would have the gift that would keep on giving! A peace on earth, goodwill toward men, and all the glory given to God in the highest. Merry Christmas!

By Benjamin Budde

Contributing columnist

The writer is a husband, father, preacher, writer, artist, musician and songwriter. Ben and his wife, Missy, reside with their three sons in St. Marys.

The writer is a husband, father, preacher, writer, artist, musician and songwriter. Ben and his wife, Missy, reside with their three sons in St. Marys.