Every year, our families participated in a "Secret Santa" event. Into a bowl, we would put folded pieces of paper with our names on them, and each person would draw a name for the next Christmas. They would then buy a gift for that person and wrap it, but leave out the giver's name. Later, because our families live in various parts of Ontario, Canada, it was decided that one person would print out the names of the family members and then draw the names on behalf of everyone. He was the only one who knew who bought for whom. It was decided that the value of a gift would not exceed twenty dollars.
My brother, who was in charge of this annual event, recently sent an e-mail to us which said the following:
- To break routine for a year, I was actually thinking of going a different, more giving route this year: sacrificing the grownups' fun and directing the money we would have spent on each other for a worthy cause. The $20.00 a person we normally spend on fun gifts will go a long way towards helping our favourite charity. We can do it one of two ways: you either give Barb and me the money or you purchase something of your choice. Barb can supply you with a list of things that they desperately need. Let me know how you guys feel. Harry.
After reading my brother's suggestion, I was thrilled. Instead of purchasing yet another unnecessary item that one day will end up in the dumpster, this gift would be greatly appreciated by the ones who cannot help themselves. After all, isn't Christmas about helping the less fortunate?
Over two thousand years ago, a baby was born in Bethlehem, the greatest gift that mankind would receive: a Saviour, Who at an early age in His life gave Himself for us, so that we may have life eternal.
Ephesians 2:8 – For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God. (NASB)
Perhaps this Christmas, you may want to "pass it on" by helping an organization that desperately needs help. It may be by volunteering your time in a hospital, in a nursing home, or a church. It may be by donating items of food to your local food kitchen or animal shelter, or by making a monetary donation. Whatever you decide, your gift of giving will be greatly appreciated. After all,
John 3:16 – For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. (NASB)
What will you decide?
Prayer: Thank You, God, for giving us the greatest gift of all time: Jesus, Your beloved Son. He is the reason for the Christmas season. He gave us life so that we can give gifts of love to one another. Amen.
Listen to this devotional
Listen while you read: "Lo How A Rose" (Lyrics)