I love to buy Christmas gifts for my children. Because I am their mother, I know what they like and what would surprise them on Christmas morning. Giving them these gifts is a way for me to share my love for them, and it is fun to watch my children delight in the gifts I choose for them.
According to consumer markets, layaway programs, and the amount of debt many parents acquire during the holiday season, I am not alone in this sentiment. We as parents desire to give our children good gifts.
Jesus used the analogy of parents wanting to give good gifts to their children to compare how God, our heavenly Father, wants to give us good gifts.
Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?
Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?
If you, then, though you are evil,
know how to give good gifts to your children,
how much more will your Father in heaven
give good gifts to those who ask him!
• Matthew 11:9-11 •
When we think of gifts, especially this time of year, we instantly think of packages under the tree, but the good gifts God gives to us are much more than material possessions.
The celebration of advent focuses on expectantly waiting to celebrate the birth of Christ in the Christmas season. The word advent is derived from a Latin word meaning coming. As we prepare our hearts for the coming of Christmas, we can focus on the themes of advent as four gifts given to us by God through his son Jesus. Focusing on these gifts prepares us to truly celebrate and delight in the many good gifts God has given to us, including the greatest gift of Jesus.
Below I have listed the four advent gifts that we receive through Christ with a verse to go along with each one. These verses can be used to read, meditate, and discuss with your family this advent season. Talk about how these gifts have impacted your life and the graciousness of God who is the giver.
The Gift of Hope
I wait for the Lord, my soul does wait,
And in His word do I hope.
My soul waits for the Lord
More than the watchmen for the morning;
Indeed, more than the watchmen for the morning.
• Psalm 130:5-6 •
The Gift of Peace
Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you;
not as the world gives do I give to you.
Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.
• John 14:27 •
The Gift of Joy
But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid;
for behold, I bring you good news of great joy
which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David
there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
• Luke 2:10 •
The Gift of Love
But the lovingkindness of the Lord is from everlasting
to everlasting on those who fear Him,
And His righteousness to children’s children,
To those who keep His covenant
And remember His precepts to do them.
• Psalm 103:17-18
God gives us as his children these good gifts because we are his children. And he loves to see us delight in these gifts at Christmas and everyday.
Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift! • 2 Corinthians 9:15