“Then they opened their treasures and offered him gifts…” (Matthew 2:11)
The magi presented gifts to our Lord on this day. They came a long way to see him, so you can imagine that great thought and care went into the choosing of each gift that was offered. As I look on this Christmas season and think of the gifts I gave to my loved ones, I ask myself if I really put my whole heart into those gifts. I kid you not, but I got 80% of my Christmas shopping done at the gift card stand at Walgreens one day when I went in to get something. Now gift cards are great presents, and I rather enjoy getting them especially if it’s for a store or restaurant that I frequent. The recipients of said gift cards were happy to receive them and have already put them to good use, but I still feel like I should have put more thought and effort into it. This comes on the heels of visiting a friend’s house this week for his birthday and watching his wife very carefully and meticulously spend several hours preparing his birthday gift. I could see the love being poured into this gift and started reflecting on what I put into what I give the Lord.
Today we journey to Bethlehem with the Magi to adore the Lord and present our own gifts. To continue a theme I started developing a few weeks ago, we each have unique gifts that have been given to us by God that we are to place at His service. What gifts will we present the Lord on this day? How much thought, heart and effort will we put into choosing the gift we will present to Jesus? As we try to make good on our resolutions as we start this New Year, perhaps we should start small and give Jesus the gift of our heart. It isn’t so much a gift that would benefit him, but it will greatly benefit us. If we could spend more time in the presence of the Lord in 2014, kneeling in prayer in our chapel, that could be the greatest gift we could give our Lord on this Feast of the Epiphany.