Welcome to our special series, “Keeping Christ at the Center of Your Holidays.”
Over the next few weeks, you get to enjoy the wonderful words of my amazing friends as they share with you creative and practical ways you can keep Christ in the middle of all of your celebrations.
Our prayer is that you will come to know Him, worship Him, enjoy Him, celebrate Him, and share Him with family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors. People all around us need to know the love of Jesus.
May we all be bright “lights” this year – sharing hope to those who need it most!
“The giving of gifts is not something man invented. God started the giving spree when he gave a gift beyond words, the unspeakable gift of His Son.”
How to Simplify Your Gift Giving & Enjoy Christmas More
A few years ago our family dramatically changed its gift-giving traditions.
You might be wondering how it’s possible to get a family to change 20+ years of tradition without a major meltdown?
It was really easier than you might think.
Our children were grown and our grandchildren were young . . . the perfect time for a change. And I’m so glad we went for it because this meaningful way of gifting has been enthusiastically embraced as our new tradition.
The Magi came to Bethlehem with gifts to worship Jesus.
Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the reign of King Herod. About that time some wise men from eastern lands arrived in Jerusalem, asking, “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw His star as it rose, and we have come to worship Him.” Matthew 2:1–2
Gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
Each gift (as it turns out) represented a significant part of Jesus life and ministry:
A gift was given to royalty. Pure gold was considered to be a gift of virtue. For us, gold reminds us that our holy Savior is the King of kings and Lord of lords.
A gift of costly resin used in incense, to represent the prayers of the people ascending to God. For us, frankincense reminds us that Jesus is our high priest, who sits at the right hand of the Father, and intercedes on our behalf as we lift our prayers in His precious name.
A gift which foreshadowed Jesus suffering and death. Myrrh was used medicinally as an anointing oil for wounds, and an embalming oil following death. The gift of myrrh reminds us of Jesus sacrifice. His very life for our salvation.
Back to our gift giving.
No, our family doesn’t actually wrap up little packages of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
We give each person three gifts with Magi meaning:
Gold – a gift the person has listed as their “treasure.”
This doesn’t need to be costly . . . just have value for them.
Frankincense – a gift to bless their spiritual life.
This might be a devotional book, an uplifting DVD, or new CD by their favorite Christian artist.
Myrrh – a gift for the body.
This is usually cologne, a lotion, or clothing . . . something which soothes or comforts them physically.
There you have it!
The Gifts of the Magi giving tradition.
We love it!
It has taken a lot of the stress out of our holiday preparations, changed our focus on gift giving, and blessed us more than you can imagine.
The star that they had seen in the east went before them until it stopped above the place where the child was. When the wise men saw the star, they were filled with joy. They came to the house where the child was and saw Him with His mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped Him. They opened their gifts and gave Him treasures of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Matthew 2:9b-11
Then, we read through the meanings behind each gift and set our hearts and minds on Jesus the reason for our celebration and God’s greatest gift.
Thanks be to God for his gift that is too wonderful for words. 2 Corinthians 9:15
If you’re not ready to change your Christmas celebration, you might want to keep this in mind as a way to celebrate Epiphany on January 6th or add it to what you’re already doing.I pray your Christmas preparations are blessed and that your celebration is filled with His love and joy! Click To Tweet
What’s your favorite tip for making Christmas gift giving meaningful?
Thank you, Deb, for stopping by today to share such a practical and creative way to give gifts at Christmas! I love these ideas! We appreciate you and your generous and encouraging spirit!
And, we hope that you and your family will enjoy a very meaningful holiday season this year!
- I am a blessed child of God, pastor’s wife, mom, gram, daughter, sister, and friend who
loves nothing better than laughing with friends over a good cup of coffee.
- Also, I love sharing the amazing ways God transformed a “good little church girl” into a woman of faith, who is crazy in love with Jesus through my writing and at retreats and conferences.
- I am a work in progress taking life one grace-filled moment at a time.
- You can find Deb at: http://countingmyblessings.com and at http://faithnfriends.com.
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