Several years ago a faithful friend and mentor shared what she had planned to give Jesus for His birthday. The Lord had revealed to her that His desire was to sanctify her in the area of listening and her gift would be James 1:19 “This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger.”
This idea of giving to Jesus encouraged me to begin my Christmas season not with my list of gifts for those I love but to start with a reflection of my walk with Christ.
This idea of giving to Jesus encouraged me to begin my Christmas season not with my list of gifts for those I love but to start with a reflection of my walk with Christ. Since Christmas is His birthday, what gift would I present to Him this year? What area of my life, in regard to my relationship with the Lord needed some sanctification? I began to mediate upon this thought and I asked, “Lord, what example do we have from your Word about presenting a gift to you?”
The Lord brought to my mind the three Magi. The Word records in Matthew 2:2 “The Magi asked, ‘Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east and have come to worship Him.'” And in Matthew 2:11 “After coming into the house, they saw the Child with Mary His mother; and they fell to the ground and worshiped Him. Then, opening their treasures, they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.”
I was overwhelmed with joy by the thought the Lord had given me! I came before His Word and prayed, “Lord, Your Word commands us to offer our bodies as living sacrifices, pursuing holiness by not conforming to the pattern of this world, and that by doing so, we are truly and properly worshiping You. You then will be able to transform us by the renewing of our minds and we will be able to test and approve what Your will is –Your good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:1-2) Lord, Christmas is the celebration of Your birth and my desire is to honor and celebrate You first! I offer myself to You and I ask You would open my eyes and reveal to me the area in my relationship with You that is conforming to the pattern of this world, rather than Your image. Renew my mind with Your Word of truth so that I can experience You and Your good, pleasing, and perfect will. Lord, what gift could I present to You that would bring glory and honor to Your name and conform me more into Your image?”
I wrote out John 3:30 along with a prayer asking the Lord to conform me into His image, that I desired to decrease, so that He could increase and be on the throne in every area of my life.
As it is with each and every one of us, through spending time in His word, the Lord can show us what areas in our lives that need to be sanctified. So as I began my daily quiet time, the Lord caught my attention with John 3:30 “He must increase, but I must decrease.” I knew this was the gift He was asking me to give to Him. I responded, “Yes, Lord, this is the area that needs to be conformed more to Your image and I offer it to You! There are several areas in my life that I am still on the throne rather than You!
When we give gifts we box them up and wrap them in beautiful paper and bows, and my gift would be no exception to that tradition! So on a piece of card stock I wrote “My Gift to Jesus” and below I wrote out John 3:30 along with a prayer asking the Lord to conform me into His image, that I desired to decrease, so that He could increase and be on the throne in every area of my life. I wrapped my gift in a beautiful box and as the Magi did I imagined laying it at His feet as I placed it under the tree.
This small gesture has been such a part of my transformation into the likeness of Christ, and it is my desire that you would be transformed as well! Before your focus turns to family, gift lists, and holiday preparations, I would encourage you to put Christ first by spending some time in the Word and giving Him control to reveal this year’s focus of growth. Out of His great love for you, He desires that time, to reveal the area in need of sanctification, which will ultimately conform you into His image!
As it is with each and every one of us, through spending time in His word, the Lord can show us what areas in our lives that need to be sanctified.
Let’s celebrate together the true meaning of Christmas, the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! It is His birthday and He is the celebration!
Are there areas in your life that the Lord desires to sanctify? What will be your Gift to Jesus this year?
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Image Credit: JEL, Creative Commons