“many brought gifts…”
2 Chronicles 32:23
My girl and I did some Christmas shopping today. Neither of us is much for shopping most of the year. I mean, don’t get me wrong; we like owning stuff, we just don’t like shopping for it all that much. Hard to find what you want sometimes, or you can’t find it in the size you want, or it’s more money than you have right then.
It’s often the same with shopping for others. Sometimes you search and search for that perfect something, or the perfect size or color. The more important the recipient is, the more important it is to get it right.
And have you ever had the experience of an un- or under-appreciated gift? I have. I remember, years ago, carefully choosing a piece of jewelry for a friend, and a short time later, when I was visiting her, I saw it in a pile of things she was giving to charity. I didn’t say anything, and it didn’t hurt our friendship in any way, but it was a lesson for me. I think that ever since then, I have given gifts with maybe a slight callousness to my heart. Not in a bad way. I don’t mean cynical, I just mean that I remember that once a gift belongs to the recipient, it’s their decision what happens to it. They can treasure it forever, or they can toss it aside.
It’s a lesson to remember for both given and recipient. Have you ever opened a gift and thought, “What the heck were they thinking?” Well most likely, they were. Thinking, that is. Most likely there was thought behind that gift, and plenty of good intentions besides. And while we can’t save everything forever, our hearts should receive with appreciation and gratitude.
And while you’re at it, give a second thought to the many gifts the Lord has blessed you with. Respond in your heart, with love and appreciation and gratitude. It is a sweet fragrance to Him.