“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 (NIV)
“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 (NIV)
In the story of Scrooge, as portrayed by one famous movie, Scrooge is visited by some business men seeking a donation from him to buy some food for the poor. As expected Scrooge sent them away with nothing.
But during their attempts to solicit funds from rich Scrooge, they said that it was at Christmas that want is most keenly felt. So it is that in all our communities the poor feel their poverty most keenly at Christmas. They can see the fancy, large houses all decorated for Christmas. They may even be able to look in the front windows and see a Christmas tree beautifully decorated. When they arrive back home they see nothing by way of decorations. They cannot spend rent money on a Christmas tree. They wake up Christmas morning and to them it is just a hurtful day.
In the story of the birth of Jesus we see a very poor couple with a child and their poverty would be most keenly felt when they had to flee to Egypt for refuge from the murderous hatred of insane King Herod. How would they afford the money needed to sustain them in a foreign land (Egypt) where they did not know the language?
God met the need of this impoverished couple through the Magi—who came with costly gifts for the child. God met the need of Mary and Joseph because they had this gold to support them until the mad King Herod died and there was no more threat to the boy Jesus.
This Christmas all of us will know some who shall wake up alone on Christmas morning. These people will not have any gifts to give or receive. How can we wish such people a “Merry Christmas” when their want is most keenly felt? How can Christmas be merry for them?
Why not take such a person into your home Christmas day? Why not buy them some presents to open when you gather around the tree? Or why not give a single parent some “gold” (money) so they could afford a turkey with all the trimmings, and be able to buy their children some presents? I know families who gather up all the money they would have spent on themselves for Christmas and give it to a single parent as they wish the parent a “Very Merry Christmas?”
Is not your heart challenged to do something for the poor like Mary and Joseph? Can you not give some “gold” like the Magi to a poor couple? The money you give is very important and I urge you all this Christmas to make it “Merry” for some poor family. There is lots of time yet to do this generous act. It will also make your Christmas merry because you have acted like the Magi and made provision for the poor. Go and make Philippians 4:19 a reality in the lives of someone or some family today.