“It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35
When Jesus said “it is more blessed to give than to receive”, He was not saying the more expensive the gift the better! Yet at Christmas how many people go into financial debt trying to make people happy?
It takes some courage to swim against the tide, but that is what Jesus wants us to do. The “tide” I am speaking of is a spirit of consumerism that has people believing that we show love by giving lavish, high priced gifts.
Let’s reflect on what St. Paul said,
“In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ” Acts 20:35
What does Jesus truly desire from us this Christmas?
Jesus desires our heart. He longs to be the center of our lives! He wants us to imitate Him and be One with Him. God says, “…give me your heart and let your eyes delight in my ways…” Proverbs 23:26
Charity, compassion, love, mercy, justice…that is the Way of Jesus!
There are so many wonderful charities that are working to help the suffering. May God bless them all! If you can afford to give to a charity this Christmas then give for the Glory of God. “Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward them for what they have done.” Proverbs 19:17
What else can we do to show Jesus we love Him?
There are many gifts we can give that do not involve money. Consider the following:
The Gift of PRAYER
Consider praying for people who are sad or ill this Christmas. Pray for those who do not yet know and love Jesus. Pray for those that are lost in a life of crime.
The Gift of VOLUNTEERING
Consider giving some time to a good cause that you believe in. Make a stranger smile with your generosity!
The Gift of VISITATION
Consider visiting some people who are lonely. Sometimes these people are right in our own families.
The Gift of REPENTANCE & FORGIVENESS
Let us reflect on the ways we may have offended Jesus and let us give Jesus our penitent hearts and ask for forgiveness. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
Let us also forgive those that have hurt us. “… Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” Luke 6:37
The gift of forgiveness sometimes needs to be given even without an apology. Jesus guides us to pray for those that have hurt us: “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…” Matthew 5:44
The Gift of TRUST
Give Jesus the gift of trust: “All you who fear the LORD, trust the LORD! He is your helper and your shield.” Psalm 115:11 Perhaps some of the relationships in your life are suffering because trust needs to be renewed. Let’s put all our problems in the hands of Our Lord Jesus and TRUST that He will help us!
The Gift of TIME
Consider creating some quality time with God and in the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season read and reflect on the Word of God and listen to what God is speaking to your heart.
“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10
The Gift of WORSHIP
Let us worship Our Lord Jesus as we receive His Sacrament of LOVE, the Holy Eucharist. Let us receive the Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus and invite Jesus to dwell within us and do good works through us.
Please join Christians all over the world that are stopping daily at the Time Jesus died for us, 3pm, to remember His Infinite Sacrifice and to Pray for His mercy upon all! Imagine what we can accomplish together united in remembrance of the Lord’s Passion and in a daily prayer calling for the Holy Spirit to transform our world, one soul-at-a-time!
May the true Spirit of Christmas be with you this season!