For God so loved the world, that He gave…
· John 3:16a ·
I stood outside the Washington, D.C., museum armed with a backpack that was going to help my family make it through the day. As I walked up to the security bag check, the guard eyed my youngest son’s sippy cup and informed me that liquids not in a sealed, new container were not allowed in the museum. My mind flashed to what the museum tour would look like without a sippy cup to make my son happy and quiet.
The security guard must have read my expression because he quickly and sympathetically offered me a compromise without my saying a word. With an absolute straight face he said to me, “If I watch you drink from the cup, you may take it inside.”
I felt as if I had just won the show case showdown on the Price is Right, and without a second thought I pulled the cup from the side pocket of the backpack and took a big gulp. My eyes then shifted to the faces of my older two boys (a teenager and preteen) who found their mom’s drinking from a sippy cup in public to be the funniest thing they had seen in their entire lives.
Many times as parents we make sacrifices, and many times we sacrifice without even giving a second thought. We set aside our pride and drink from the sippy cup. We will set aside our time, possessions, or, really, anything for our children. Why? Out of love for our children, we love our families and we want things to go well for them– whether it’s a simple museum trip or a major life event.
Sacrifice is defined as “an act of giving up something valued for the sake
of something else regarded as more important or worthy.”
This Christmas Advent, God has been reminding me that His sacrifice, as our heavenly Father, is what we are celebrating. Christmas is the celebration of Jesus’s humble entrance into the world. God the Father’s act of being willing to give up something He values, His beloved and only Son. He sent Jesus away from Himself and to the earth for us, knowing that He would suffer and would die an undeserving, brutal death on a cross.
Why would God make this sacrifice? Because, as the definition of sacrifice states, our all-powerful and almighty God regards us as important. He loves us and He wants to give us, His children, the gift of eternal life through a relationship with Him.
And this gift is humbling and the most sacrificial gift ever given.
This sacrificial gift should be the focus of our hearts throughout the Christmas season.