Wednesday, December 14, 2016

The Perfect Gift for a Special Need
 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
 “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?  If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
Luke 11:9-13 (NIV)
After an exhausting day, I went to lay down in bed but there was a Walmart flyer laid out over my pillow. As I looked closer, I realized that my ten year old son had circled a toy and drawn arrows all around it with his name. It gave me the best laugh. He is absolutely the easiest kid to buy presents for. I could spend thousands of dollars without any trouble if I had the money! My disabled 14 year old, however, is another story. For YEARS, we have struggled to find gifts for her. Birthdays and Christmas are supposed to be so much fun to shop for. It's so frustrating to stare at catalogs and walk through stores and come out empty handed.

When Abbey was little we got away with toys meant for younger children. As she got older, clothes became a very un-thrilling staple.There just didn't seem to be a suitable gift. It takes away a little bit of the joy when what you have to offer doesn't seem like the right fit. We have thrown out or given away many presents over the years that weren't appropriate for her special needs. In fact, one Christmas Abbey threw away a necklace without even looking at it!

This Christmas season, I wonder if we can take into consideration that to some degree we ALL have a special need in our hearts. The need to be loved, to be accepted, to be safe, to be nurtured and cared for. It’s an inexhaustible list of physical, emotional, and spiritual needs. But God did not struggle to find the way to meet these needs. Two thousand years ago he placed a brilliant light in the sky to mark the exact coordinates of the place on Earth he would send the perfect gift to all mankind. With an angelic choral announcement he proclaimed the coming King. All who gathered round stared into the face of the infant God-man who would soon change the world. The gift was born, a son given to Earth and to death. Thirty three years later, in a lavish stroke of love, he painted the cross with the blood of His son sent to die for the sins of all mankind. The son lived a perfect life and therefore fulfilled the perfect law, becoming the perfect sacrifice to pay the price for our unholiness. 

The deepest needs of all humanity are met when we receive the perfect gift. We tend to try and do anything but receive this gift. We are especially good at trying to give something back to God other than our lives. Like buying a baby toy for a disabled teenager, what we have to offer just doesn’t seem suitable. Sometimes we throw the gift away without even looking at it. No matter our talents, financial status, intelligence, or character…we can’t quite be good enough. It takes joy out of our lives when the gift we try to give instead is not the right fit. God requires absolute perfect holiness, and we can’t give it. That’s why the gift of His son is so remarkable. He knew we could not live a sinless life, and so he provided a way himself.

If you, like me, have special needs in your life that nothing can seem to satisfy, then I encourage you to look to Christ this Christmas. He is the gift that meets those deepest needs. If you have questions, seek answers. I recommend a resource called The Search for Meaning, Don't let another Christmas go by without the perfect gift. 

God I know you see and can meet my deepest needs. Help me to fully understand and accept the gift of your son. Amen

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