Gift Time Already?

  It’s happened already–at least for the gift buyer in the household. We’re already thinking: Gifts; Bargains; Sales. Great Sales, not just the 10% off a price that is already marked about 75% too high, but a really great price slashing sale like you find the day-after-Thanksgiving.
   Anybody out there participate in that day-after-Thanksgiving madness? That is like my absolute favorite day to shop. It’s become a family tradition. Year before last my oldest grand-daughter joined the ranks of the Holland Shopping Clan.  It’s a serious shopping day, not a stroll through the mall sipping coffee day. It’s really, really serious stuff! Jenny, my precious, petite daughter-in-law found that out the first year she and Jason were married.
   After Thanksgiving dinner, we pass around the sale ads, while we watch football and lick the last curl of whipped topping loaded with the last crumbs of sweet potato pie crust off the back of the fork. We plan our morning shopping strategy. Wayne gets to sleep-in, because he keeps the grandchildren and has leftovers warmed up when we get home with a carload of great bargains! He’s always so appreciative that I save him all that money, or is the “thank you” I hear him mutter, actually because he didn’t have to go with us. Still the rest of us are up at 3:30 because we have to be at the first store by 4:00 am. With mugs of steaming coffee, we pile into the car, drop off the first person at their store with lists and sale papers in hand, while the rest of us head off to our stores.
   Jenny learned the first year, you don’t try on anything, you don’t meander, you walk really fast, almost run, but it’s not polite to run, so you politely, I hope it’s polite…Lord, forgive me…it’s hard to be polite moving that fast from isle to isle snatching the best bargains you can find. Just teasing, I’m polite. I always say excuse me after I rip the last MP3 player out of your buggy. There goes that saint mentality you had of me. I’m just a blur, kinda super sonic grandma thing going on, so you probably will never see me shopping. Time is critical, so you don’t drink too much coffee, (bathroom breaks are not part of the strategy) and you don’t eat until after the shopping is done. (I like to think of it as fasting. Teasing-just teasing! Trying to make something spiritual out of this whole shopping frenzy! NOT!)
Now for the serious side of me that you’ve come to love and expect. We are entering that special season that every believer celebrates- God’s Gift to the World. His gift wasn’t found on a bargain table. God’s gift was given sacrificially and strategically through the womb of a woman. The Gift wasn’t wrapped under a tree, but stripped and nailed to a tree to purchase our redemption. As believers we experience that redemption, but it is vital that we don’t stop there. God has more for us. Acts 2:38 “Then Peter said unto them, Repent , and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” Like the gift of salvation, the gift of the Holy Spirit must be received to be realized. The redemptive work is complete in the cross, but the regenerative work of the Holy Spirit is an ongoing process that causes us to be like Christ from the inside out. Don’t miss God’s best! Experience and walk in the fullness of all that God has for you.