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Chaplain's Comments



It's Saturday, 22 December. I just got in from the store. The big one in my tiny town is Walmart, and let me tell you, the place is jammed. Not only with those purchasing food, but the very many who are finding gifts for one another, ranging from an inexpensive watch right on up to a laptop computer. And this is all well and good. Incidentally, the giving of gifts at Christmas apparently originally got its start is people doing so to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Once more, there's not a thing wrong with that. But sadly, it is a custom that has, for many in America, gone from being an adjunct to the Holiday, to be what I've heard it called, "… The reason for the season." And why should that disturb me?

The answer is simple. Because somehow the other, all too frequently, the Greatest Gift of all has been increasingly (for many) shoved in the background. That gift is mentioned in just a few words by St. Paul when he says, "… God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them…" (2 Corinthians 5:19).

For aside from all others, the greatest, the best, the most worthy in the most enduring is not that which comes from a store and changes hands, however joyfully, on that blessed morning. It's the gift of Christ, and what one company called their product fits this one perfectly, when they said "… This is the gift that keeps on giving." It will never tarnish, it will never blemish it will never malfunction, and it will never wear out.

So stop and think a minute. The Gift of your Creator is priceless beyond price. It cost you nothing, and it cost him everything – – the gift of the death of his Own Dear To Bring You and Me to Him.

Yes, His Own Dear. Jesus the Christ. The Gift That Keeps on Giving – – – "… For God Was in Christ Reconciling Us, In Spite of us, to Himself. Father John Sigmon, the Fourth Sunday in Advent, 2018.

Father John Sigmon
Chaplain, ATM, SCV