Time and thought, personal and deepening, and sacrifice all go into making the perfect gift, but if you remember back to build of Christmas morning, you know that a great gift is one that is:
Highly Anticipated. Remember the rush of repeating to your parents your gift preferences, written list for Santa and an extra for mom and dad, aunts and uncles, strangers at the mall who will listen—letting them know exactly what you want.
In fact, I want your help here, let’s look back at the most anticipated gifts of the last 50 plus years and if you remember the gift, wanted one, go ahead and clap or yell. 2016’s most anticipated gift is Star Wars themed BB-8 Droid, looking like R2D2. 2010—IPAD, 2005—XBOX 360, 2000—RAZOR Scooter, 1996- TICKLE ME ELMO, 1992—BARNEY DOLLS, 1989—Nintendo Gameboy, 1982-Cabbage Patch Dolls, 1978- Hungry Hungry Hippos, 1975—If you’ve spent way too much this holiday season you’ll be jealous on this one—most anticipated gift was the PET ROCK, 1963—EZ Bake Oven…Here is the issue that starts to probably become pretty obvious—each of these gifts despite being the best gift ever in their year—are now in a trash heap, antique shop, stuck aimlessly in someone’s basement collecting dust, now they are all obsolete—unless you need a good rock. The BEST Gift Ever is one that is anticipated but never obsolete.
In Acts 4:12—Luke makes a mighty proclamation about the longevity of God’s gift of Christ– 12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.” It doesn’t take a long life to start realizing that things aren’t like we want them to be. Watch the nightly news and quickly a depression and nihilism or apathy can set in, people all over the world are looking for a savior—some in Christ others in other religions, unbelievers in social change or government policy, some in sex and pleasure, others in the perfect relationship—one that will complete them, others by trying to drown out the world in the sea of their possessions.
Each of those areas of life will ultimately fall away, only Christ will stand as the one gift that is never going to be obsolete or outdated. In Christ we find the gift that we cannot live without, all because he was willing in his love for us, in the name of grace. He gives us what we could never earn, but all need; what we sometimes reject but could never be rivaled; what we sometimes ignore, but what allows for real intimacy. The beauty is that God doesn’t overwhelm us with every detail—no 100 page manual in 3 languages, but instead he envelopes us with his presence! The gift that is personal, sacrificial, needed, that God put time and thought into is before you—Isn’t it time that you put some thought into the best gift ever?