Friday, December 3, 2010

Giving God Excuses for Christmas

It’s that time of year again when the temperature is dropping, snow is falling, and the malls are filled with Christmas shoppers. I was out just last night looking for that perfect gift for a few more of my loved ones and trying to figure out how to get the best gift I can for the money I have to spend. Santa has nothing on me. I make a list and check it a hundred times. How much can I spend on each? What do I already have? What do I have left to get? What in the world am I going to get those hard-to-buy-for people I love? And what in the world do I get for those in my life who have everything they could ever need or want?

This morning as I was going over the list again in my mind, it occurred to me that there is one loved one whose name was not on my list – God’s. What do I give Jesus for Christmas? After all, it is his birthday! That’s why we celebrate Christmas in the first place. In considering it further - the Lord falls under the ‘What do you get the person who has everything?’ category. He created everything. He owns everything. He needs nothing. And the only thing he wants is a relationship with me. Well, he’s already got that. I gave my heart and my life to him years ago. So what gift could I possibly give God for Christmas? That’s when the Spirit whispered to me the answer, “Give me the excuses.”

So often, God calls me to task and my first reaction is, “I can’t” usually followed by “I’m too busy,” or “I don’t know how.” I always have an excuse as to why I can’t do the uncomfortable or inconvenient thing God is asking me to do. Last week, I had decided that I was not going to be a spiritual anorexic anymore. I made a commitment to read my Bible every day. It is no longer a choice. In the last seven days, I failed to meet God in his Word twice. Oh I have good excuses why I was unable to, but the point of the commitment was to spiritually nourish myself as well as build my
love and my relationship with God. I didn’t fail God, I failed myself. My excuses: I’m sick, I’m tired, I don’t have time, I don’t understand, I don’t know how, I don’t have the ability… those are what the Spirit was telling me to give to God for Christmas. If I give to him all the excuses, then there will be nothing to stop me from being with him and living out his will in my life. So this year for Christmas, I am giving God all my excuses.

What are you giving Jesus for Christmas this year?

About the pictures:
Pittsburgh, PA (Dec. 2009)

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