The Best Christmas Gift
by Eric Maggio, HCS Board Member
It is that time of year again when we make preparations for Christmas. The parties, the decorations, the baking, and the buying occupy virtually every minute of our time during the Christmas Season. At my house, we already have a few presents wrapped and waiting under the tree. Though, in the back of my mind, I know that most of my kid's Christmas presents end up in his closet or under the bed, completely forgotten in less time than we had hoped for.
As a child, there are very few presents I received for Christmas that I remember to this day. The things I remember most is the quality time spent with my family. It is easy to get caught up in all the distractions of the Christmas season and miss out on being present for our families. The scripture gives us insight into the meaning of one of the names given to Jesus in Matthew 1:23 “‘The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel’ which means ‘God with us’”. God is with us! From the beginning God stressed the importance that he was “With” us. Even at the ascension of Christ into heaven in Matthew 28:20, He told us “surely I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Time and time again in scripture God assures us that He is with us. Multiple times in the Bible, God declares that He will never leave us nor forsake us. He goes with us all the way. In that same spirit it is vitally important that we remember to give the gift of “Presence” to our families over and above any presents we choose to buy.
Build memories with your family! Our kids will always remember experiences they had with us over any object they could ever receive under a tree. Commit to the gift of presence with our families, putting down the phone, turning off the television, leaving work at work, and be present. The Gift of Christmas is that God became flesh and dwelt among us. No longer was he a long way off, but but he became tangible, accessible, the savior who walked with us. He became a savior who made a way for us to commune with God for all eternity through his sacrifice on the cross. From the beginning, God desires to be with us, to have a relationship with us. Let us represent that gift in the best way possible to our families and be present this Christmas.