When it comes to gift buying, I fall for all the gimmicks and gadgets. I am the guy who buys “the last tool you’ll ever need” and that newest tech item that “you just have to have.” My wife, on the other hand, is the opposite. She enjoys practical, everyday gifts such as shoes and kitchen bowls. Needless to say, the first several Christmases after we were married I failed picking out a gift.
For example my wife loves to read. What better gift could I get her than a tablet? She could store all her books on one device and take it wherever she went. I learned, though, a few months after Christmas, that my wife enjoys books and the printed page not a backlit screen. After sitting around our house unused for several years, the tablet was sold in in last summer’s yard sale.
Then there was the year I got her an automatic curler that could be used with one hand. The advertisement promised that if you clamp the curler on a strand of hair, it twirls it up and makes beautiful perfect curls every time. This product was guaranteed to curl any hair, and my wife always complained her hair never held a curl. I was so excited about this gift I gave it to her two weeks early. However, after several attempts to curl her hair with it and only managing to get it tangled and stuck in the device, the curler landed in the same spot as the tablet – last summer’s yard sale.
I have since learned what my wife likes and last year I got her a gift that she loves and still uses a year later!
Nobody enjoys seeing the gifts they got someone go unused or neglected. There is often a lot of thought and time put into a gift because it is a small token of our love to that person, and, when a gift is neglected, it is a little disheartening.
I cannot help but think of the gift God gave mankind, the best and most precious gift ever given. Isaiah 9:6 says, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” God Himself gave us His son, and, not only did He give His son but, He gave Him to us knowing He was sending Him to die for unjust sinners. The greatest gift ever given was given in Bethlehem the night Christ was born.
How sad it is that the greatest gift ever given, a gift given by God Himself, goes neglected by so many. Can you imagine how God feels as He looks down and realizes the gift He gave mankind, His token of true love, is often so neglected?
1. The gift of salvation goes neglected by many.
John 3:16 tells us, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” So many go through life never stopping to accept God’s free gift of salvation. They spend their lives trying to conjure up their own salvation, some by their religions practices, others by the lives they live, while God’s free gift goes unaccepted and lays there neglected.
If you are reading this and have never trusted Christ, salvation is a free gift purchased by Jesus Christ Himself when He died in our place on Calvary. He conquered death and Hell three days later when He rose from the grave. To trust Christ, realize you are a sinner in need of a Saviour. Realize that your sin has a debt attached to it that you can only pay with an eternity in Hell. Lastly, realize that Christ paid that debt for you and put your trust in Him alone to save you. Romans 10:13 gives us this assurance: “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Call out to God to save you today! Don’t neglect the gift of salvation any longer.
2. The gift of a personal walk with God goes neglected by many.
Perhaps what is just as sad as many not accepting the gift of salvation is all of those who have accepted the gift but who neglect the walk with God that is available to them.
When Jesus died, He not only paid for our sins but He restored the fellowship between man and God that had been broken. How sad it is that many of God’s children though will go through their Christian life never truly walking with God neglecting the gifts of prayer and the Word of God. Of all the gifts you could neglect this Christmas, don’t neglect the gift of a walk with God.
There are so many wonderful gifts that God gave us when He gave us His Son; the local church, the Holy Spirit, the promise of Heaven, joy, peace, and the list could continue. This Christmas, enjoy the gifts God gave us that first Christmas night. Don’t grieve our Heavenly Father by neglecting the great gifts He gave us!