Advent 2014 // Presents vs. Presence

Day 10 of Having a "Mary" Christmas in a Martha World

John 15:11; Hebrews 3:1-6; Colossians 3:2

"These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full." - John 15:11

It seems every year, the excitement to buy gifts starts earlier and earlier. Retailers entice us with sales, promotions, limited supply items, etc. AND! Simultaneously creating mass hysteria.

The week before Thanksgiving, my husband rushed to Target because of a 3ft tall Elsa doll that the store only carried two of! He ended up being one of the lucky ones to get the doll. But the whole thing is SO ridiculous! 

We get sucked into the madness, doing whatever it takes to grab that highly coveted item of the year from keeping vigil outside Best Buy to maxing out credit cards that the Christmas season has all but lost its meaning to consumerism.

But is it ever enough? 

We buy the new iPhone only to replace it the following year with the new model.

We get the 65 LED Ultra HDTV and add in a brand-new speaker system, Roku player, and God forbid we forget the wall mount.

We get the life-size Elsa + Anna doll, sing-along DVD, rain boots, and accessories. And a new Disney movie will come out and we repeat the process.

But who are we kidding? Its.never.enough.  

One of my most favorite and beloved Christian authors, C.S. Lewis, writes, "And out of that hopeless attempt has come nearly all that we call human historymoney, poverty, ambition, war, prostitution, classes, empires, slaverythe long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy. God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing."

Weve gotten so caught up in the hype of presents that we SUBSTITUTE it for presence.

We fill our lives with so much meaningless materialism, consumerism, and debt — with the hope that it fills the voids in our hearts.  

But God doesnt care about the new iPhone or flat screen TV. He doesnt need presents. God just wants us.

Simply. Solely. ONLY us.

To spend time with us. To sweetly cherish us. To love JUST us. 

And for us to love Him.

For in Him we find joy, hope, life, peace, sustenance, and everything that the new iPhone could never ever satisfy.

Peace be with you, my gorgeous faithful sister.

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