Saturday, December 20, 2014

A Gift For Jesus

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With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high?  Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old?  Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil?  Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?  He has told you, O man, what is good: and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?  Micah 6:6-8, ESV (emphasis mine)

 As I was rushing from store to store recently trying to find just the right gifts for family and friends I had a thought.  What would Jesus want me to give Him for Christmas?  What present can I bring to Him?  I asked my son Brandon what he thought Jesus would want and he said right off the bat, “Our hearts mom.”  Well duh.  That is exactly right—he wants our hearts.  Our all and all.  When Jesus called his disciples He simply asked them to follow Him.  That is what being a Christian is all about; walking with Him and following where He leads.  Giving Him our hearts and minds.

And how do our actions show He has our hearts and minds this Christmas season and beyond?  The verses above in Micah spell it out for us.  The Lord requires us to do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with Him.  Do justice and love kindness.  As a police lieutenant’s wife right now this is a tricky thing.  My husband is one of the good guys.  A strong and faithful Christian who also happens to be a white police officer. It is very easy for me to get defensive on his behalf.

Yet we live in a fallen world where institutional and personal racism exists.  My friends who are people of color and have boys deal with a daily burden that doesn’t even cross my mind.  They need to teach their boys how to show respect to police officers in order to avoid misunderstanding and stay safe.  Having two boys myself this has never even crossed my mind.  As a Christian family we need to carry each others burdens, seek justice and be kind.  I’m not much sure how to do this but I know I can seek to understand and ask questions.  I can pray.  I can be kind.  I can walk humbly. 

Being in the special needs family those of us who are lily white can somewhat relate to the fear of police misunderstanding a situation.  We have heard in the news cases where those with autism and other special needs have been hurt or even killed because their disability causes behaviors and aggression.  As the mom of a nonverbal son with autism who doesn’t often respond to instructions I worry about this as he gets older. I’m very thankful that this week my husband’s police department is having a trainer on autism from Luke’s school come in and do a department-wide teaching.  So I can in a miniscule way understand the fear my Christian brothers and sisters of other races might feel. That’s a start at least. 

As we continue to give Jesus our hearts and walk humbly with Him may we show the world what Christmas is about; Jesus, God with us, Immanuel.

Prayer:  “Lord, we want to walk humbly with you, seek justice and love kindness.  But we need your help!  We love you and are so thankful that you entered into this fallen world as a baby.  How amazing!” Amen.
By Deb Abbs

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