Advent 20 - The Most Expensive Gift

DAY 20 - The Most Expensive Gift
Read John 3:16-17

Jesus was in the beginning. Jesus is God in our skin. Jesus died in our place. This proves, once and for all, that God loves us. 

Think about Jesus’s death like this: good gifts cost something. The best gifts cost something big, maybe even a sacrifice. We instinctively value sacrificial gifts more than others and downplay gifts that cost nothing. A single mom who works two jobs to put her kids through college makes a big sacrifice. Her sacrifice proves her love. On the other hand, Elon Musk is worth almost $200 billion. It’s no sacrifice if he gives a homeless man $1,000. Good gifts cost something and the best gifts cost a lot.

Jesus Christ died in your place. That proves God’s love. That’s why the apostle Paul told the Romans, “God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners” (Ro 5:8, NLT). In Jesus Christ, God gives HIMSELF to you. God gives what only God can give: God! Even if you don’t believe in God, wouldn’t you want that God to be God? Doesn’t that quicken your pulse? That love melts pride and raises our dignity at the same time.

Love inspires love. I always want to give something to someone who gives me something. But what on earth can I give God? How can I ever match God’s gift?!?

Maybe Isaac Watts said it best in his hymn, The Wondrous Cross: “Were the whole realm of nature mine, that were a present far too small. Love so amazing, so divine, demands my soul, my life, my all.”

God gives you the best gift God can give: God. The only thing worth giving God, the only thing that only I can give, is me. We give what only we can give because God gives what only God can give. When you see how amazing, how divine, is God’s love, you’ll give God your soul, your life, your all. And like him, you’ll love as much and as many people as you can. That’s the gift of God. It’s all for you.

God in Christ died in your place. He gives what only he can give to do what you could never do for yourself. Take a few moments to quietly think and pray about God’s love for you. You might slowly reread John 3:16 a few times.

God of grace, your eternal Word took flesh among us when Mary placed her life at the service of your will. Prepare our hearts for his coming again; keep us steadfast in hope and faithful in service, that we may receive the coming of his kingdom, for the sake of Jesus Christ the ruler of all, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. AMEN.
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