Christians, remember to be cheerful receivers this Christmas.
There are two ways in which people tend to be uncheerful when receiving gifts. The first is to think, “I don’t deserve this. I am not good enough for this.” The second is to think something like, “Is this all I’m worth to you? I am better than this.” We should avoid both.
For those in the first camp, who say, “You shouldn’t have; I don’t deserve this,” remember what the Christmas season is about. The Gospel of John states, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” Let me say that again. “He GAVE his only Son.” The world was not worthy of the gift that God gave in the incarnation of his Son. That’s what made it a gift. If the world were worthy, it wouldn’t be a gift at all, but a payment for a transaction. But because we were unworthy, it is a glorious gift. Your friends and family are giving you a gift. You’re probably right. You’re not worthy. But that’s what makes it a gift. Celebrate it!
To those who say, “this isn’t a very good gift. I deserve more than this,” I will also remind you that if you want something based on what you deserve, you want a payment for a job, not a gift. Also, think about the gifts that the wise men brought with them. Through Jesus entire galaxies were created. The gold, frankincense, and myrrh that the wise men brought were part of Jesus’ own creation. They weren’t bringing gifts as worthy as he is. But they brought him gifts, nevertheless. He was grateful.
I’m grateful for my family. They receive gifts gracefully. I don’t deserve such a wonderful family, and that’s why I am grateful for them. They are a gift from God.
Receive your gifts gratefully, and if you haven’t gratefully received the greatest gift of all, Jesus, Christmas is a great time for receiving a gift.