Guidelines: Good Gifts


By Simon Ambit

An elderly friend of mine passed away last week. As I attended the funeral services held in his memory, there were many kind thoughts shared of him as well as comfort given. I recall two comments made that stood out to me. The one being “life does not begin at birth, nor does it end at graveside” and the other stating that “a horizon is just the limit of our sight.” Both of these comments cause me to reflect upon eternal perspectives.

As we enjoy the Christmas season and all that it is, the thought that our lives are an eternal round, rather than a segmented time line, is exactly what I believe Christmas is all about. The birth of the Christ child was prophesied long before the star guided the wise men on their journey unto him. His life was continually abounding with stories of Him expanding horizons; not only by restoring physical sight, but also by bringing personal vision and clarity to our purpose. And after His death on the cross, He arose triumphantly from the tomb to live again.

Christ taught that our lives here on earth are to prepare us for “eternal life” and “the life to come.” I appreciate the perspective of death being a horizon to this mortal existence. Each of us will one day we get to walk out to that horizon and enjoy a whole new stretch of expanse and experience.

I am grateful for Christ. I am grateful for the Christmas holiday as we commemorate his birth and strive to emulate His kindness. His life taught us about the journey of ours. He showed us how to expand our horizon, how to treat others and how to attain our potential; and doing so requires us to act. Every time I’ve looked, the horizon is stationary. Meaning, like the wise men, we must go to it.

As the commemorative birthday morning arrives, the children bound out of their beds and gift wrap begins to flail. Let us do as the apostle Matthew wrote “give good gifts unto your children.” May we always take the chance to reiterate that we are giving gifts to remind us of the celebration a birth.

A birth that was likely only dimly lit by candle light. A birth which took place without doctor or nurse. A birth that found no place in the inn and took place out in the stables. A birth that found a boy wrapped warmly in swaddling clothes and placed humbly in the manger. A birth that ushered a heavenly king to the earth. A birth that expanded our horizon by making eternity possible. A birth that changed the world. The birth of a prince a peace, the birth of Jesus Christ.

Let Earth receive her king! Life is good, Merry Christmas.

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