You know that story about the rich great aunt you never knew who leaves you a million dollars? Well, that’s me. I’m not the rich aunt, but I am the recipient, and it wasn’t a million dollars, but enough to be substantial to a teacher. I also had the privilege of knowing my great aunt. Her name was Marjorie, and she was a sassy lady who overcame polio, ovarian cancer, and leukemia! I knew that in spite of her humble lifestyle she had saved some money, but I didn’t know I would be inheriting any of it.
When I got the phone call that I was one of her beneficiaries, I cried. I had talked to Aunt Marjorie almost every week the past year or so, and she had never mentioned anything about this at all. She knew her cancer was terminal, and at nearly 92 she had lived a full, exciting, eventful life. We talked about her travels, her ducks on her farm, her husband, her life during the Depression, and even her funeral. Through all of our chats, she never once mentioned anything about her will, and I never once thought to ask.
Some people give gifts with strings attached. I will do this for you, but you have to do something for me. Others give gifts to enjoy the response and feel appreciated. Then there are those who give just to give. Aunt Marjorie could have easily mentioned her plans and expected me to come to Seattle where she lived to grovel at her feet, or take her to her many doctor appointments, or even just say thank you–but she didn’t . Giving a gift she knew I would appreciate immensely was enough for her. There were no stipulations about how I should use the money or how I should show my gratitude. Just a simple gift.
I didn’t deserve anything from Aunt Marjorie. She gave just because she loved me. I now feel an overwhelming responsibility to be financially frugal and more conscientious about each penny I spend.
God gave the gift of Jesus in much the same way. I don’t deserve His love and forgiveness. God gave His son because He loved me. Period. Just like my responsibility to Aunt Marjorie to be a good steward of her gift, I need to be a good steward of this gift from God. Like her gift, He gave His gift with no stipulations. He doesn’t command me to grovel at his feet, and although often I have even forgotten to say a simple thank you, He won’t take it back.
In this season of gift giving and receiving, I want to shout from every mountain, and more importantly show through every action, that Jesus Christ is King! Remember the greatest gift of all. Show how much you appreciate this amazing, undeserved gift through your actions and words. God gave Jesus just because He loves you.