. . . it was by the generosity of God, the free giving of the grace of one man Jesus Christ, that the love of God overflowed for the benefit of all men. Romans 5:15b
Have I got a deal for you! Buy one get one free! Entire store 50% off! Free gift to the first 100 customers. Black Friday and Cyber Monday headlines were everywhere seeking to lure you into their doors or onto their website with the best deal in town. People left their families and camped out for days just to get the newest technology at the cheapest price. This year, the marketers went a step further in an attempt to convince us that Thanksgiving day was the only time we could grasp the treasured deal!
Now I like a bargain as much as the next person. I am the first to seek out the sale or the percent off signs when I go shopping. I will buy the extra item to get my total purchase to meet the free shipping offer. I have even enjoyed many years getting up in the wee hours of Black Friday to shop for special deals with my family. These excursions were focused more on the event of being together, stopping at the coffee shop, seeking a few bargains, and traipsing home with our treasures. This experience is vastly different in comparison to the news shows filming people pushing and shoving each other to get that prized item. By opening on Thanksgiving day this year, retailers were putting a priority on their sales while devaluing the time with family and friends just to lure you into the world of commerce.
There is no doubt that I buy more during this season because it is the time for gift giving. To be able to land a few bargains helps me to stay true to the planned budget and avoid the January bills. But am I stressing more about the cost of the gift than the thought behind the gift? I remember many years when our limited budget required me to make most of the gifts for my family. When I have been the recipient of these homemade gifts, they hold a special place in my heart and my home. This year I don’t have time to make the gifts, so I am surfing the net for the best price on the requested items. I know that I am vulnerable to deal distraction, but as I shop and order, I don’t want to overdo just to fill the base of the Christmas tree with a multitude of packages. I want to focus on the reason we give gifts. Giving gifts is a way of expressing love just as God expressed His love for us with His gift of Jesus. It’s a way to honor those we love as the wise men honored the Christ child when they found Him.
At Christmas, we celebrate the gift of the Christ child, but that is just the beginning. Jesus paid the highest price for us known as GRACE. God’s Redemption At Christ’s Expense. This is the best deal you will find this season. It’s not on a website, it’s not advertised on TV, it’s a free gift given to all who believe in Him. John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.” Free!
Celebrate the best deal in the world: God’s free gift of eternal life! This is what Christmas is all about.
Thank you for your free gift of Grace. It is because of the love that you have shown me and the love the Father has lavished on me, that I am able to have eternal life. I want to renew and reenergize my commitment to you today. Help me to keep this first in my mind as I celebrate with gift and activities throughout this Christmas season. Amen