The Bible has a terrific verse very applicable to the season we are in and the way we spend money at this time of the year. Found in 2 Corinthians 5:15 (New Living Translation) it reads, “Those who receive His new life will no longer live to please themselves. Instead, they will live to please Christ…”
And, I wonder if our actions and attitudes at this time of the year – Christmas – really please Christ? I wonder if the way we spend money on ourselves and our family members really pleases Christ? Maybe we have missed the whole point of gift-giving. Maybe our gift-giving really does not express in any way the heart and intent of the first Christmas gift – the Father’s gift of His Son. Maybe true disciples should give some thoughts to who they buy gifts for, what they buy and how much money is spent doing so. This is especially true when millions of children go to bed hungry every night through no fault of their own – and some of them are in our nation. Truly our gift-giving seems a bit out of step with reality and maybe even a poor expression of the true meaning of Christmas.
I believe that true disciples need to sort through what it means to “…live to please Christ…” and then change lifestyles to fit with the new perspective and so please Him who was the first gift of Christmas. For some this will be simply a slight bend in the road; for others this will require a massive change in the way they view and live life and a radical change in attitude. However, for both it will mean releasing more money for Kingdom purposes and being able to express the love of God through giving to those who are brothers and sisters in the faith and who have so little through no fault of their own.
God so loved that He gave a gift – and we express our love for Him by how and to whom we give. Christmas is a good time to examine our lifestyle and see if maybe it has become somewhat selfish and thus self-pleasing or whether we are truly living to please Christ.