This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
” By Gregory Valentine
Oh no! Not another family holiday! What! I’m still recuperating from the last one! Did you know around the turn of the century the family was the main producer of goods in the community? Yeah I was shocked too. This means that the society we live in is not based on giving, but receiving. In Acts 20:35 Scripture says Paul told people “to remember the words of the. Lord Jesus, how he said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.* How does this translate into our culture? Well around the holidays, many have sought the altar of commercialism to provide that Oh so special gift for that Oh so special someone who deserves it. I’m being sarcastic, you say? Well just try to not to give a gift to anyone of your regulars next year. You will be met with the very loud attitude of you’d better give me a gift or I’ll-be-forced-to-kill-you-with-my deadly-bad-vibes and non-compliant-body language is typical weapons wielded for birthdays and most holidays, especially Christmas.
No expectations, no devastation.
When you start expecting to get a gift you are in essence trying to force the decision of another person to favor you. If you do that in our post modern hyper-capitalistic system of society regarding of economics, you must buy me the most up-to-date consumer merchandise. I must have it or your love for me will be questioned. When are you going to buy me an engagement ring?
What is a Gift? Webster-Merriam Dictionary say Definition of GIFT Gift a noun 1: a notable capacity, talent, or endowment 2: something voluntarily transferred by one person to another without compensation 3: the act, right, or power of giving
A gift by definition is something given to someone else that is not earned by something they did. Voluntarily.
Dang it, Santa! He’s been teaching us wrongly all these years! He knows when you are sleeping he knows when you’re awake, he knows when you’ve been bad or good so be good for goodness sake. Naughty or nice is a seeking for a payment, like, like it’s a wage at the end of a two week pay period. I deserve this gift! I did a lot of chores to get to where I am today. I want that gift! This is so wrong! Yet, this is the song that we hear in the toy stores Christmas Eve. You
are expecting someone to give you something that you think you deserve!
Now a gift is a sacrifice from the one giving it and an undeserved blessing to the one receiving it.
Now we get to the dilemma of Valentine’s Day, the most commercial conspiracy of them all, after Christmas. It preys upon your very soul. Forcing you to make various noninstinctual actions, that you’re supposed to do, which is more than you‘re already doing. Why? Because the commercial markets tell us to, that’s why! The desire to buy chocolates, flowers, candies, metallic balloons, and cards is mixed with feelings of fear, and the dread of being either unsympathetic, unloving, or worse, “un-human.”
So what’s my advice? Yes, I have advice for this debacle.
God’s example, I like to take my examples from things that do not
change. He gave his only son that the world may be saved through him. He didn’t want the world to perish with the consequences of sin but he makes it a free gift to any who will receive it. He doesn’t give that gift because we deserve it.It said that he demonstrated his love to us in that while we were still his enemies he send his son to die in our place for our sins. Here in is love, not that we loved God, but that God first loved us.
A gift is to be directed and implemented by love. Love is
not conditional, otherwise it is not love. We hear of all the lives of people who
were devastated by parents who would be proud of their children during times of good but not times of bad, would love them less. How they were loved or showed love on sunny days, metaphorically but were abandoned on the rainy troublesome days. To give something should be directed by and governed by love. 3.
Show your love to your friends and loved ones everyday, as much as you can or are able to. Daily, be kind to them, do stuff
for them and be a blessing to their life.
Do a little something extra nice for them not because they deserve it or that they are entitled to but because you care for them as a whole person if they are to earn it, that’s
what monetary allowance is for, not a gift.
You can’t earn a gift. If you could, just by the definition alone it is not a gift, but a wage and reward.
A gift is correctly exchanged when it is something of meaning to a person who means a lot to you.
Purposely, do not do anything special for anyone, in direct connection to a holiday, or a birthday date, because
of the commercial demands forced upon you.
Things are more affordable way before holidays or directly after a
It teaches the person not expect to get something because
everyone else is pressuring you to act and get them something, it lacks the genuine and sincerity as you are standing in line trying to buy a present for someone who is forcing you to.
It gives you ample opportunity to be creative and to keep
that special someone from expecting something, and to be completely surprised when then do get something.
10. This forced propaganda of trying to get us to buy instead of being the producers and initiators of our own romance and ongoing affections. 11. Keep them guessing, is my best bet and don’t do it because the
market says so, this goes for any holiday where you are forced to fund the economy because it is imposed because of external pressure. 12. Teach them how to give by not expecting but give others.
It’s your choice. Either it’s a gift when you determine to give it or you must do it
because society pressures and external expectants forces you to so.
*(Many preachers use this one verse incorrectly to get people to give more money when in fact the context is that the preacher should be the one giving more from his own personal resources to help the sustain the poor! That is a topic for another post outside of our scope.)