Love the giver more than the gift. ~Brigham Young
During Christmas one year the adults sat in a circle opening family gifts. As I flipped the lid off of a box, I started to cry. Inside was an oddly shaped piece of wood.
“What is it?” my brother-in-law asked, looking around the room for an explanation.
Tears streamed down my face as I crossed the room to kiss my father-in-law. “It’s the ears to the donkey Pap made for me years ago. The original ears broke last summer.”
My husband’s parents had been down to visit and noticed the broken wooden planter on our porch. My father-in-law remembered when he got back home and made the ears to set atop the old donkey. I was touched.
Gifts are not my ‘love language.’ I enjoy a nice gift, but a gift that takes time and effort, that gift I will cherish.
Philip entered a foreign land to tell people about a gift that was given to each of them. All they had to do was accept it.
But Simon wanted to purchase the gift. He wanted to have control of the gift: pick it out, wrap it the way he liked, and give it to whom he chose.
Philip refused to give the gift to Simon because of his ulterior motives.
The gift Philip and God offered was the gift of the Holy Spirit. But don’t we sometimes act like Simon with our gifts as well?
We want to be able to understand scripture so we can crack someone over the skull with it. Or we want to pray like the apostles so we can have whatever we ask for- health, wealth, and fame. Maybe we want the gift of patience so we can avoid confronting people, or the gift of spiritual sight so we don’t need faith, or the gift of joy so we don’t have to deal with that grumpy neighbor.
The best gift-givers know what a person needs and in the end what he will desire. Like a cut-out of donkey ears that brought me to tears, so just the right gift can move you toward true gratitude and appreciation of not just the gift, but also the Giver.
What gift do you need to kiss the Father for today?