I was struck by a pre-Christmas talk given by my friend Ravi on the Sunday before Christmas. I’ve adapted it slightly (partly because I can’t remember it verbatim, and partly because I thought I’d add a ‘what they could have done’ thought.)
For each of the people in the Christmas story, we considered what they gave.
Mary gave her body. Now, I’ve never been pregnant, but I know it’s quite a commitment. For Mary, too, there were plenty of other issues surrounding it. But, following the visit of the angel, she accepts God’s plan for her. She agrees to bear His Son.
Joseph gave his reputation. No small matter. The whisperings and mutterings. The glances. And the danger to his income.
The innkeeper gave some room. Nothing glamorous, of course, but something nonetheless.
The angels gave a message. They gave news to the shepherds. They gave praise.
[sorry – the pictures stop here. It was taking far too long to actually get this post published!]
The shepherds gave their trust in the message. They gave their time to investigate, and they gave their witness to Jesus’ birth. They hurried off, discovered the truth and spread it.
The star gave its light. Having been doing its thing for however long, it carried on doing it and pointed the way.
The wise men gave their time and their treasures. It was likely a fair old expedition. They devoted themselves to it and worshipped.
God gave His Son.
His Son gave His life.
Which leads to the obvious question and application.
What can we give?