08 December 2008

Christmas Coupons


"Have your finished your Christmas shopping yet?!" It's a common and breathless question this time of year. Interesting...the consumeristic assumption that is revealed. Gee, are all my Christmas presents garnered through...shopping? Hmm...

Why don't we ask, "Have you finished getting your Christmas gifts yet?!" Check, check, names off a list. Still more names left? Sigh. Well, that is better, but...how about

"How is your Christmas giving going?"

I like that one. Giving places no limits on what type of gifts may be offered. It could be something material, wrapped up in a box. Or it could be an intangible present. A present of presence. It's not necessarily something bought, but it is something spent. We might give up our time...or our pride...or our anger...to give ourselves. Like time, even if it is inconvenient. Or the offer of a first step towards reconciliation, even if it hurts. If we think about giving, rather than shopping and gifting, we might give them something more than a mug that merely serves to allow us to self-righteously check them off of our list. (I have done this. Haven't you?) A list is about something we do in order to be done with it. And we want to do it as ________ as possible. Fill in the blank with any choice: quickly, costly, frugally, easily, unconventionally, contemporaneitiously, etc. (I just had to throw in that last one for fun!)

Giving suggests an on-going action. That gerund form of the verb isn't ever finished. And, truly, the giving of ourselves throughout the year is our best tribute to Christmas, for the Creator Himself gave Himself, to us, in that manger long ago. And continues to give us Himself every moment of our lives, if we receive Him by faith. Our names aren't merely on His "list" to check off like Santa. Our names are engraved on the palms of His hands. We are those to whom He delights to give Himself in a myriad of ways each day.

So, if you would like to step into the story this Christmas season, and for the rest of the year, here is a beautiful and simple way to do it. Click here to see some pretty Christmas coupons you can print and customize for free.

Give yourself.
Give presence.
And keep giving.

No comments: