Last Friday was our last day of school for the year. I work in a school office where we have lots of generous parents, and my coworkers and I got little gifts all day long. We got lots of homemade goodies. We got gift cards. We got Christmas cards and handwritten notes. All of the kind wishes and tokens of appreciation were all very heartwarming.
But, I suspect the gift I will always remember the most, was a little handmade paper ornament from two sisters. They have had a rough year. They lost their dad and they come into the office on the way to the clinic, frequently. They usually seem to be looking for just a little extra attention, which our nurse is more than happy to give.
My Friday morning began as it often does, with an early morning visit from them. But, when I saw their little stack of ornaments, I had to fight the tears. Each one was decorated specifically for the recipient and had a hole punched in it with a carefully tied gold chord through it.
They had quite a stack and I’m sure it must have taken them a while to get them all made. When they proudly presented mine to me, I felt like I had received a true treasure.
I immediately thought of the Christmas song, “The Little Drummer Boy.” The child had no expensive gift to bring to the Baby Jesus, so he brought what he had, his ability to play his drum.
A grown up Jesus told His disciples when He witnessed a widow giving only two small copper coins, that her gift was greater than anyone else’s there, because she gave all she had.
In God’s economy, it’s never been about the size of the gifts we bring. It’s about the place they come from. It’s about the hearts who are giving them.
May we take this time in Advent as we await the coming of Christ, to purify our hearts and give to Jesus from that place. In the “Little Drummer Boy,” Jesus smiles at the little boy, showing approval of his gift. When we give what we have, no matter how big or small, with a pure heart, I know that He smiles on us too and blesses us as well.
I saw Jesus in the faces of two little girls and a homemade paper ornament. They reminded me of the true meaning of Christmas. Perhaps you needed reminding too.
Have an awesome day!