For young children, Christmas often brings a mountain of presents. As the big brown truck pulls up outside and deposits yet another supply from out of state relatives, the pile under the tree grows ever higher. Add to that stash a trip to Grandma’s house, and Santa doesn’t even need to come.
A child can be overwhelmed.
But as they filter through the endless boxes of Legos, Barbies and board games, there is that one gift they are looking for. The one at the top of the wish list. The bicycle. The camera. The guitar. “The” item they want above all others. If that is not there, then the other stuff just becomes fluff. No more valuable than the empty gift boxes wrapped underneath the mall Christmas tree.
As adults, although Christmas doesn’t contain nearly the same amount of physical gifts, we can still become overwhelmed with all that the holiday holds. Baking, parties, decorating, wrapping, and cards.
It’s easy to get lost in the fluff and wrapping paper.
But, like children, don’t we still desire that one gift? The one our heart aches for above everything else. If we were to receive it, none of the other holiday stuff would matter.
Is it healing from sickness? Help for a broken heart? That pay raise, or maybe just a job? The long awaited book contract? A prodigal’s return?
Maybe, this is the year.
One year, when I was young, I thought it would be fun to sneak into my parent’s closet and see what they bought me for Christmas. Big mistake. I was disappointed twice.
The unwrapped items, fresh from the store, sitting in a plastic bag suddenly looked so plain and weak. Then a week later, when they were wrapped and I opened them officially on Christmas morn, the mystery was gone, the secret already told. And I had a hard time enjoying the holiday or the gifts. My hope for that one thing was dashed.
Today, I still have a deep longing I want fulfilled. One thing my heart desires above any other gift. But as much as I would like to, I can’t sneak a peek in God’s closet and see if He has it waiting for me this year.
So I hope.
But hope in Him is not like a ruined surprise. Or an unwrapped and undesirable gift that’s lost its glamour. A trinket played with for a while then quickly tossed aside. Hope in God does not disappoint.
“And now, Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in You.” Psalm 39:7
So, whether my one desire is sitting underneath my tree this year, I no longer have to wait. I have already unwrapped the best gift ever. The gift given long ago. The gift of God, come to me, abiding with me.
He fills my deepest longing in my heart with more of Him. And I am not disappointed.