Christmas Gift of All
© Betty Sue Eaton
Each year, people get caught up in the celebration of Christmas with gifting, visiting,
eating and enjoying their families and friends. Even as I do, they tend to push the real
reason for the holiday to the back burner in favor of the more commercial aspect of the
This is a time of the year when old hurts are downplayed and we speak openly to each
other with more warmth and cordiality than in the previous eleven months. That in itself
is a good thing, but it would be much better if we could be so warm and cordial all the
time and not just through a special holiday.
If we are caught up in grief, or grief recovery, Christmas can be a very dark time for us
as we are focused on our loss of a loved one, be they family member or dear friend.
We lost our youngest daughter on November 14 many years ago, and as we drove to
visit my father for Thanksgiving, I felt as though I was forgetting to bring something
very important. That incomplete feeling stayed with me for a very long time, and not
until I had accepted the loss of Paula did the feeling subside.
We can all take comfort in knowing that even in a death, there are blessings we can
embrace given by our Lord. He sent his son Jesus Christ to save us and bring us to
Himself when we leave this earthly place. Christ was crucified to ransom us from our
sins and assure us a place with His heavenly Father in our hereafter. With the death of
our loved ones, we can be assured that they are at home with God for eternity leaving
us with wonderful memories of them we will cherish the rest of our lives.
We run around and shop for just the right gift for those on our lists because we want
them to enjoy our thoughtfulness, and we receive well-chosen gifts from others' lists
with equal enjoyment. But the greatest gift of all for Christmas is the one that the Lord
gave to us: Life everlasting. Yet, He didn't run around shopping for the perfect gift for
us; He had only one gift in mind and it came from His heart of hearts: His only begotten
son, Jesus Christ. He came to live among us in the form of Jesus to experience our
wants and desires, and in doing so, He learned of our deep sinful nature.
It took Him 33 years to arrange for our gift, and then He presented it to us in a most
painful and unselfish way: Jesus' death by crucifixion. But that death was not the end
of the story; it was only the beginning as He was resurrected on the third day and
taken up to live with His father in heaven. His gift prepared the way for us to follow in
our death, and as well, the death of our loved ones.
Through God's gift to us, we should not grieve the loss of our loved ones; we should
rejoice that they have gone home to be with the Lord only a little before us. When we
give and receive our holiday gifts this Christmas, let us all remember the true meaning
and purpose of Christmas and give thanks for the greatest gift that can be given. It is
unique in that no one can ever match the majesty of it; no one can duplicate it, and no
one can top it! Our gift is so magnificent that words alone cannot describe it: That gift
is eternal salvation, from God, through Jesus Christ for all time to come. Thanks be to
|A Christian Grief Ministry