Being the Gift
by Rev. Tom Gray
I’d like to follow up on a previous post about each of us “being” the Christmas gift. Offering our time, love, and presence begins, of course, in our immediate family. There are things we can do for or time we can be with loved ones, dedicating our abilities and time as a gift.
But some of us don’t have family or, perhaps, they are too far away for us to visit. I recommend that we look around in our community. I have parishioners who spend Christmas Day serving food to homeless people. Others work to find out the names and needs of shut-ins. Being shut-in myself, I can testify how helpful and healing it is to have someone come by to see me or help me. It is, truly, like an expensive present.
You can talk to community leaders wherever you live in order to find people and needs you can attend to. There are institutions and schools for children who are temporarily or permanently parted from their home family. There are people in jail who hunger for anyone who will care. The point is, if you look around you, you’ll find many people for whom you can be the gift. Just stop by (you’ll need permission from those who lead the institutions), come with a book, a picture, or a story you can share. I’ve done this and know that you receive far, far more than you give. When you do this, you’ll be the hands, feet, and voices of Jesus, who came to us long ago on the first Christmas Day.