“On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.”- Matthew 2:11
Gifts are one of the fun surprises about the Christmas season. Often it is the unexpected gift that touches our heart the most and meets the greatest need.
One of the most moving Christmas stories from the Bible takes place when the Magi/Wise Men follow the star so they can worship the newborn king. Mary and Joseph were not expecting these visitors or their gifts. The treasures given to Jesus have both symbolic meaning and practical value. At first glance, they may be surprising gifts to us, but they spoke volumes about who Jesus is and served His family well.
· The Gold would represent a gift worthy of a king. It also would have been able to cover the travel and lodging expenses for this poor, young family who found themselves living in Egypt for a season before returning to their hometown of Nazareth.
· The Frankincense was a fragrance to symbolize worship and sacrifice. This expensive, sweet-smelling incense would have changed the atmosphere in the stable.
· The Myrrh had many uses: anointing oil, perfume, and as medicine. This gift was prophetic in nature, a foretelling of the sacrificial death Jesus would endure to insure the victory of eternal life for us. This gift was could be used for ailments like rashes, scrapes/cuts, and teething common for a young child.
The gifts of the Magi were not random. These were treasures that spoke about Who Jesus was and were practical in the provision they afforded a family in need.
As we come to the end of 2020, this is often the time people are praying about/looking to give a YEAR END GIFT. Christmas is the season of giving and one of the best ways we can celebrate, honor, and follow Jesus is to give with the same heart and spirit that He did. In Acts 20:35 Paul reminds us of the very words of King Jesus, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” If you would like to give a gift as a way of thanking God for His goodness to you this past year and sowing into our 2021 vision and journey as a church family, you still have time. You can go online to give at tofoursquare.org/giving or mail a gift to the church office (2348 Townsgate Road, Westlake Village, CA 91361) and postmark your check 12/31/2020. Thank you for following Jesus, walking with us as a church family, and living a life of generosity.