Like many American families, this year we’ve made a deliberate decision not to go into debt because of Christmas. For this reason, we’ve been more strategic about the gifts we buy. The good thing is that we are sticking to a budget. The bad thing is, I can’t get everything I want for my family. I started to feel pretty sad and down about it when God tapped me on my shoulder (metaphorically speaking) and asked me, “How have you treated the gifts I’ve already given you?” I was instantly convicted. There are so many gifts, both physical and spiritual, that God has given me, however, I haven’t been the best steward over them. Then the extra “ouch” kicked in when I thought of my husband.
My husband is one of the best “gifts” God has given me but I wondered to myself, “Have I treated him as a gift or have I taken him for granted?” After I asked myself this question, I wondered how I would feel if my son took a special gift that I have given him and misused or mistreated it; if it had been thrown in the “old toy” pile and gone unused. Then I began to realize, I want God to bless my marriage but if I’m not a good steward over what He’s already given me, how can I expect Him to give me more? If I don’t take care of my home, how can I expect Him to bless me at work or in other areas of my life? If I neglect the most important gift He’s given me, how can He trust me with anything else?
Many of us are guilty of throwing our spouses in the “old toy” pile. We don’t give them the Christmas morning attention that we used to give them. We may dust them off from time to time but we don’t really value them like we used to. What we fail to realize is that our spouses are gifts from God. They are customized, special ordered, and hand delivered just for you. Some of us give our jobs or even our cars more attention than we give our spouses. We spend extra hours at work but won’t give your spouse a date night. Some of us take our cars to get washed, waxed and oiled up the second the sun peeks through the clouds but we no longer pamper our spouses. We shower our children with affection but only kiss our spouses “hi” and “goodbye”. When we neglect the gifts God has given us, we essentially tell God that the work He put in to fine tune that man or woman for us was for nothing. We tell God that His choice in spouses is a bit lacking and we want a better gift next year. We tell God that the gift He gave wasn’t good enough.
I’m extending a challenge to you (and myself) this Christmas holiday season. As we celebrate the gift of Christ’s birth and salvation, put your spouse under that tree (metaphorically speaking – or maybe not). Give them the Christmas morning special. That excitement you showed when you first got them, dust that off and bring that out this year. Show God how grateful you are for the gift He’s given you in your spouse and have a Merry Christmas!!!!