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Christmas Exchange

Staff Member
Christmas Exchange - December 19, 2005

When I was in elementary school, the marvelous December holiday was still called Christmas rather than "winter holiday". The teacher put all of our names in a hat; we would draw a name and give that person a Christmas gift. The day of the party was wonderful, with food and games, but of course, to me, the highlight was the gift exchange. I always hoped the gift I gave would at least match up in worth to the one I received, so that I wouldn't be embarrassed or outdone. I wanted things to be "equal", more or less.

There is another gift exchange I experienced in my life. It was so unbalanced that it is hard to believe. This exchange transpired when I first believed and accepted the fact that Jesus had died for my sins. I gave him my sins, and He gave me His goodness and forgiveness. I gave Him my waywardness, and He gave me eternal life with the Father. I gave Him my greedy selfish nature, and He gave me His life's bloodshed on the cross, in excruciating pain. How totally unbalanced is that? I got everything wonderful and gave him my bag of sinful garbage. The Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 5:21 that God took the sinless Christ and poured our sins into Him. Then, in exchange, he poured God's goodness into us. What a swap that was! What a loving God we have; one who was willing to allow His son to smell the stench of sin and suffer the pain of bearing it so that we could be reconciled with Him, our heavenly Father.

If you have never participated in a Christmas exchange, I encourage you to do so. Accept the gift of eternal life and forgiveness of sin that Christ himself will give you. It is certainly not an even exchange, but one that He offers with love so profound that it is beyond our understanding.

Contributed by Marion Smith

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