19th December 2013

The Only Gift That Satisfies

In this Christmas period many people will be giving and receiving gifts. Without a doubt some of them will be very welcome, whilst at the sight of some others, out first thoughts will be less than of obvious delight.

Yet Christmas is about what St Paul describes as God’s ‘indescribable gift’ (2 Cor 9:15). Almost everyone knows the Christmas story and through the centuries it has inspired countless  traditions: decorations, pageants, philanthropic gestures, family lunches, staff parties, pantomimes and now Santa dress ups.

But far too many people, including believers, fail to be impacted by the real meaning of Christmas: God has really given us a gift that satisfies; it can remain ‘unwrapped’. However His love, truth, freedom, salvation and hope can and should be an experienced reality for every person who sincerely seeks Him.

Ironically however Christmastime had instead become a distraction which may actually hinder a real or a renewed and deeper encounter with God, especially in prayer . This is the ‘master key’ which constantly leads us into the interior journey from knowing about God to knowing Him, from having Jesus in the crib as a decoration to Jesus having  in our lives as a Lord and Saviour.

So why not decide now to take some time out with Him. The Word of God has become flesh and made His dwelling among us (John 1:14). And the first sound to come of the the Incarnate Son of God’s mouth on this earth was an infant’s cry. What does such humility tell us?  Is it not that God weeps to see us run after that which gratifies but does not satisfy?  Is it not that only He really ‘satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things’ (Psa. 107:9). Maybe that is why the ‘Bread of Life’ was born in Bethlehem ‘the House of Bread’. It reminds us that if the reality of the Christmas event doesn’t feed us we will remain hungry.

Wishing you all a very blessed Christmas