The greatest gift

Generous God,
you give us more than we need,
and we take it for granted.

Christmas is coming, 
and we are very busy.

We are making lists,
and trying not to forget anyone -
searching for the perfect gadget for a brother,
or the book that we are sure a friend will love,
or the jumper that will suit Auntie to a T.

We live in an age of choice,
too much of it sometimes.

And meanwhile many of our brothers and sisters around the world – 
and, yes, on our own doorsteps -
are struggling to find work,
to grow enough to feed their families,
to keep warm,
to retain some dignity.

They are exploited
to satisfy our demands 
for more clothes than there are days to wear them,
fashionable for a few months and then discarded -

and gadgets with built-in obsolescence,
constantly “improved” so that we must have a replacement –

we use people and resources
as if there were no tomorrow.

God forgive us
and teach us again 
the true meaning of Christmas,
the coming of the greatest gift of all, ever.

2 Corinthians 9 6-9

Remember that the person who plants few seeds will have a small crop; the one who plants many seeds will have a large crop. 7 You should each give, then, as you have decided, not with regret or out of a sense of duty; for God loves the one who gives gladly. 8 And God is able to give you more than you need, so that you will always have all you need for yourselves and more than enough for every good cause. 9 As the scripture says,

“He gives generously to the needy;
    his kindness lasts forever.”