Monday, December 17, 2012

Christmas Reflections

Merry Christmas!
 I’m sure that all your decorations have been hung, all your gifts purchased, and all your travel plans made!  I am READY for Christmas.  I love to give gifts! I love making a list of all my friends and family. I Description: RestoringHope3C.pngenjoy thinking about each individual – their likes, dislikes, and needs. I relish the idea of finding just the right present, no matter how much searching it takes. And I savor the moment when they unwrap the shiny paper to reveal the wonderful item inside! It brings me joy!
I’ve been reflecting on Christmas and gifts a lot this year.  This is my last Christmas with my family for a while. My last church Christmas program. My last youth group Christmas gathering. My last Christmas with all the grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins.  Next year, I’ll be spending Christmas in Welkom, South Africa at Restoring Hope Village. I will see children who have nothing receive Christmas gifts for the first time ever. What will that be like? Will I miss my family and friends? Probably. Will I miss all the presents under my Christmas tree?  I don’t think so.
Though I thoroughly enjoy giving gifts, I know that they do not last. Eventually, all the toys break and the clothes tear.
While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.     2 Corinthians 4:18
The only lasting gift is the one God gave through His Son, Jesus Christ, many years ago. And my purpose in going to South Africa is to share THAT gift of love with others.  
This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.  This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”                     1 John 4:9-10
I’m thankful someone loved me enough to share that gift with me, and I know sharing it with others will bring more joy than giving any physical gift could.