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"Don't miss out on the greatest gift of Christmas" by Colleen Mallette (CatholicMom.com) Image credit: Unsplash.com (2019), CC)/PD[/caption] Christmas is around the corner, and there are so many things to do to prepare. One of the main goals is buying gifts for our loved ones. We all want to buy that special something that each recipient will just absolutely love. We can’t wait to watch them open it and shriek with glee as they hold it up for everyone. We want to make them happy and let them know how much they mean to us that we put the time and money toward this special gift. We look forward to future visits when we see them wear the gift, or visit their house in anticipation of seeing it out on display. Imagine how disappointed we would feel if we don’t see it out, but rather see it shoved in the back of the closet or given away. Christmas isn’t only about presents, of course; it is about love and family and celebrating the birth of Christ. Jesus is the greatest gift we will ever receive, both in His humanity born as a babe over two thousand years ago and every time we receive Holy Eucharist. God sent His only Son to save us from our sins and teach us how to live. It was a huge sacrifice for God to give up His Son, and then to have Him suffer so much physically. Just as we want our gift recipients to appreciate and love our present, God also wants us to appreciate and love the gift of His Son. He doesn’t want us to lose focus in the busyness of Advent with all the things that take away from the true meaning of Christmas. Our loving Father freely gives this gift of Jesus to anyone who accepts Him. He doesn't want this gift returned or exchanged. He hopes it doesn't just sit on a shelf getting dusty over time. He also doesn't want it merely to be displayed for admiration in a corner of a room. And He surely hopes it doesn't end up shoved to the back of a closet as unused, disliked or unwanted. God wants us to accept this gift of Jesus into our hearts and live as holy as possible. He desires that we be so grateful for this gift that we want to share it with others. Also, He wants us to build our relationship with Him through prayer, Mass, reading Scripture and worship. The gift of Jesus is such a blessing wrapped in unconditional love that we can never thank God enough for. It deserves to be imbedded in our hearts, uppermost on our minds and foremost on our tongues every day. Advent is a perfect time to appreciate this gift from God, telling others “Merry Christmas,” participating in church celebrations and donations, putting out nativity scenes in and outside our homes. We shouldn’t be so bogged down with busyness that we neglect to truly celebrate the birth of Jesus. Advent is a journey that shouldn't end with Christmas Day. The gift of Jesus should keep on giving all year long.
Copyright 2019 Colleen Mallette