If you haven’t already grown anxious trying to find the perfect gift for that loved one, or the least expensive thing that might pass for a gift to that one you don’t love so much, you probably will soon.
And if you haven’t grown anxious about finding the perfect gift for another, then you’ve grown anxious that another might give you an imperfect gift, and are practicing your gift-opening poker-face.
Because there is so much failure in this regard, for many the days after Christmas will be spent exchanging those gifts that weren’t so perfect, after all, and we won’t be surprised because all those givers aren’t perfect, either. And, even if we don’t exchange them, we can “re-gift” those imperfect gifts from imperfect people, and trust that if we re-gift to the original giver, imperfection will cover a multitude of sins.
Part of our problem is that we don’t know how to define “good” or “perfect” or, for that matter, “gift.”
This is why James, the half-brother of Jesus, reminds us that it is God alone who is the perfect giver, who always gives perfect gifts, and who alone can define what is good (James 1:16-18).
Even trials (1:2-4) and temptations (1:13-15) take on a different hue for the believer, not because they are good in themselves, but for what they reveal about the goodness of God. They do this because of the one and only gift we should be truly concerned about receiving: salvation in Jesus.
James tells us that God, by his own will and by grace alone, brings people to saving faith in Jesus through the good news of salvation in Christ. For those who have this perfect Gift from the perfect Giver, every other thing we might receive is good.
And, unlike that “perfect” gift we might receive from some other person, we can “re-gift” the Gospel without giving up any of its effects in our own lives. Jesus Christ can be received and given freely, repeatedly, and cheerfully.
Do you have this Gift? Then give Him to everyone on your list. Do you need this Gift? Then look here for more.