Unopened Gifts

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows
James 1:17 NIV

We have heard if from the time were were children. This is the season of gift giving. In both the Christian holiday of Christmas and the Jewish holiday of Chanukah, the practice of giving gifts is the highlight in many of our eyes.

We spend months, days, and hours online and at the mall seeking the perfect gift. One drive by the local shopping center, this time of year, will confirm the importance of this aspect to the majority of people.

Every year, my wife and I struggle to determine the wishes of our children and grandchildren. The task gets harder each year due to the increasing advances in technology and the ever expanding stores of goods acquired by each of us.

We live in an increasingly material society. We have need for little and even less tolerance for, what we see as, marginal quality. We expect to be entertained or lavished upon by our gift givers.

Gift giving permeates out lives. We give gifts at work, at school, at church, at lunch with our friends, not to mention the gifting with our family.

It seems we have become masters of gift giving, but for what purpose?

The problem comes when we turn to the other side of this equation. The side that involves receiving.

We have so much of everything, we soon become insensitive to our role in receiving.

We all know the feeling, when a gift is given, that is not exactly what the recipient wanted. The reaction is evident in their eyes. The gift is destine to be re-gifted.

The rejection of a given gift is probably the greatest gift giving fear we have.

Some years ago, I worked in a joint venture company, between American and Japanese companies. The practice of bringing a gift was a very important part of doing business with our Japanese partners. During any visit it was important that a gift was brought to the host. Although the gift was graciously received, it was considered inappropriate to open it in front of the giver. If for some reason you did not like the gift, it would be impossible to hide your dissatisfaction. By not opening the gift in front of the giver they were spared the embarrassment of having to apologize.

How many of us would knowingly bring reject a gift? How many of us would take it one step further and never open the gift? I would guess the answer would be few.

Yet, on a daily basis, and especially at this time of year, many of us do just that.

We celebrate the greatest gift ever given. The birth of our savior Jesus Christ.

Year after year the battle rages about taking Christ our of Christmas. Eventually we bow to the wishes of others and greet them with “Happy Holidays” or “Seasons Greetings”. We remove the baby from the manger.

The greatest gift ever given remains unopened in the hearts of men and women throughout the world. We reject the grace and mercy of a loving God. A God who was willing to give all of Himself, that we would no longer taste the disappointment of the creations of our fellow man, both emotional and spiritual.

At this time of year, when we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. This year take it one more step, receive the gift that He has given. The gift of His son Jesus Christ. Bring a change into your life that you never thought possible.

You will experience the blessings of the full gift giving cycle. The blessings of giving and receiving.

Merry Christmas



1 Response to “Unopened Gifts”

  1. 1 3amazingdaughters December 24, 2009 at 3:00 PM

    We’re enjoying your blog and invite you to check ours out as it’s also about family, kids, good times, etc. We’re at If you like it, please add us to your blogroll. Thanks and Happy Holidays!


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