Thursday, December 24, 2015

Spiritual Journey Thursday - The Greatest Gift of All

 I look forward to Thursdays when I can publish thoughts on my spiritual journey and hear the thoughts of others on a weekly basis.  It has become a space for an encouraging and fortifying community to come together.  We welcome anyone who would like to join us! 
This month has taken on its own theme - unintentionally on my part.  The theme topic of GIFTS developed.  Today's post is about The Greatest Gift of All.
     I can't believe it's Christmas Eve!  How does Christmas season go by so fast?!  It's so filled with preparation and anticipation, and then the big day seems to be upon us in no time at all.  I have another day of getting things ready, but I hope to settle in and enjoy the evening when the family will be together for dinner and Christmas Eve services.  Christmas Eve at my church is my favorite service of the year.   After singing carols,  reciting prayers, and listening to beautiful music and the message, we light our candles, the chandeliers are dimmed, and we sing "Silent Night".  It's magical.
     Every year I marvel at the gift God sent to us in the form of a tiny baby.  As I set up my nativity scene this year, I reflected on how simple a scene it was, but also how beautiful.  I realize December 25th was most likely not Jesus's actual birthday, but I'm grateful we celebrate it all the same.  It gives us a chance to remember what our faith really represents - a belief in a God who would send His only Son down to this flawed and sinful place to save us in love.
     The adult education committee I'm on at church puts together an Advent Devotional every year.  This year's theme was "Songs of Christmas".  My week was about faith. Here was my contribution:

1 Corinthians 1:9

God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

     My family and I got an invitation from my daughter’s sorority earlier this fall to attend a Make-a-Wish fundraising event at The Shoe at Ohio State.  We were excited and of course RSVP’d “yes”!  We got to have a tailgate dinner inside the stadium, get a tour of the press box, and take pictures on the field.  We talked about how cool it was and enjoyed having an inside look at such an impressive place. We sent Snapchats, Instagrams, and Facebook pictures to our friends.
     When I think about this verse, I wonder, do we get as excited about this invitation to enjoy an “inside look” at God’s Kingdom?  Do we realize who is asking us to join Him in fellowship?  Jesus Christ our Lord is opening His house for the grandest tour of all to ANYONE who will RSVP “yes”.  He has called us; He will keep His promises, and if we accept, we will be in fellowship with Him for eternity.  Now THAT is something to get excited about!
Dear Lord, help us keep Earthly people and places in perspective.  Open our hearts, eyes, and minds to the amazing realization that you have invited us into fellowship with you.  Thank you for that invitation.  We accept. Amen.

     Tomorrow, as we give and get earthly gifts under the tree, let us remember the greatest gift of all...Jesus and His love for us, coming down to us in human form to sacrifice everything for our chance to spend eternity with Him.



  1. The wonder of this greatest gift is that it's not a one-time gift. One-time gifts are those that lose their "newness" quickly--last year's gotta-have toy, the fabulous outfit that now doesn't even qualify as "vintage." The gift of our Savior is eternal and new every morning.

  2. In typical holiday rush, I accidentally deleted my comment to you. Thanks for being a faithful friend and for keeping this sacred place for us to share in our spiritual journey. I hope to find the courage and the time to write today. God bless you and yours today and always.

  3. What a beautiful devotional, Holly! I'm with Margaret in wanting to thank you for faithfully opening up your blog to our links! I wish you and yours a very blessed and happy Christmas!

  4. Once again, in your most delicate way, you provide challenge and opportunity to journey closer to the Lord, this time, by your reflections as we ponder the meaning of His Birth. Thank you for the invitation offered each week to join you in sharing our journeying. SJT is a continuing act of mercy to all of us. God bless you and all those you pray for and love. May you be blessed in very special way this Christmas--and always! Yours is a great gift of faith, hope, and love that you share each week. Thank you!

  5. May the spirit of Christ filter through your life and your family's, Holly. Thank you for the song and the fellowship throughout this year. Merry CHRISTmas to our SJT community.