“On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” – Matthew 2:11
Some gifts. The hymn calls them ‘sacred gifts of mystic meaning’. They are in fact gifts fit for a king and certainly not cheap and tawdry. Gold, though a king might already have plenty. Incense, fit for one to be worshipped. Myrrh, used in pain relief, so fit for one who was to suffer.
Of course, these gifts bear no comparison with the ones that we will be giving or receiving next week but, as we sometimes say it’s the spirit in which they’re given that really counts.
Lord, help us to remember your words that ‘it is better to give than to receive’ and to be thankful for whatever comes our way this Christmas.
And remember that it’s still not too late to surprise someone with even the simplest of presents or maybe a Christmas Day telephone call to a person who will probably spend the day alone.
David Shearlock, partner priest in the Beaminster Team Ministry
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