Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas List

So how's your Christmas shopping coming? Someone snapped a picture of me out doing my shopping and I thought I'd share it with you. I look pretty happy, don't I? Because that's what the season is all about - shopping, being happy and enjoying the holiday.

So how're you doing? Are you having a great holiday season?

How's your gift list? Do you have everyone covered? Inevitably I do forget someone. It's just my lot in life. I usually try to have a few extra gifts on hand for when I realize I have forgotten someone, so that I can quickly wrap up something and still look on top of it. In the end, everyone's happy, right?

Last year I challenged my readers to give a gift to Jesus. After all, it is HIS birthday, and who goes to a birthday party and gives gifts to all the guests and not the person with the actual birthday? If you want to see the challenge, read here:

So here is my update from last year. I did follow through on my gift to Jesus and as I had suspected, I was greatly blessed because of it. You see, I did something pretty simple. I gave Him one verse a week. I promised to memorize just one verse every week for the whole year. It's really something that I should be doing anyway and one verse is not that much.

Here I am a year later and I've memorized John 15 and Psalm 139...and I love it! I cannot tell you how hiding God's word deep inside my heart (mind) has been a life-saver! In taking the verse seriously that we should take captive every thought, when I have found myself drifting in my mind to somewhere I shouldn't be, I quickly pull out my verses and start with verse one and say the whole passage, just to get my mind off of something sinful or destructive. It's really that simple and it has saved me from a lot of bitterness, anger and wasted energy.

It's time for another gift and I wanted to challenge you to make sure Jesus is on your list again this year. Remember what David said when he wanted to buy a field to give an offering to the Lord - "...I will not offer burnt offerings to the Lord my God which cost me nothing..." (II Samuel 24:24). Don't offer a gift which is costless to you - in other words, don't just regift Him something. Make it costly, make it precious, make it meaningful, practical and personal.

As I make my way through my gift list, I try to be personal with my choices, but sometimes I find something that is so wonderful, I buy a bunch of them and then later figure out who I will give it to. Not with my gift for Jesus - this one is going to take thought and effort - after all, it is HIS birthday that we're celebrating.

One final note - when you figure out what you are giving Jesus this year, write it down, wrap it up and put it under the tree. Then when it's opened you can explain to your family what you are doing and that's when the accountability comes into play. Don't hedge your gift by not telling anyone, so that if your forget or don't follow through, it really won't matter. It WILL matter - Jesus says to let your yes mean yes and your no mean no - be a person of your word. If you give Him something, don't forget but follow through. Family accountability will help you keep your promise.

Hope you are finding time to enjoy the season and I trust that Jesus is the focus of all the choices you make.


  1. So I just wanted to say that Phil and I have talked to the girls about christmas being Jesus birthday and what we should do to celebrate and Emma said that we should get a Dora and almost eveytime you ask Lily what she wants for christmas she will tell you church. I love the idea of a gift for Jesus and I am thinking of what it will be. Laura Bacalia

  2. What precious girls, Laura! This could be a tradition that has great value in the lives of your family...