So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content.1 Timothy 6:8 (NLT)
I remember when I was a child at Christmas time. The time off from school, the mounds and mounds of candy, time with friends and family, lots of food, and, of course, the presents, all created a wonderful time of year. Of course, the presents were really my focus. Indeed, planning for Christmas began long before December 25. I would begin putting together my Christmas present wish list months ahead of time. After all, I needed to make sure that I’d get only the exact things I wanted! And, I can say, I was blessed with a family that gave great presents (out of love, of course)!
Now, as the years of childhood have gone bye-bye, I don’t make Christmas lists for presents. God has given me a job and a family which tends to be my focus. Additionally, since my brother and I have a generation of Reisig children of our own, now it’s our turn to be the present givers.
We’ve made a pact in the extended Reisig family. Because we now are a family with a good number of children (I have two, my brother has four), we’ve agreed not to purchase the adults any Christmas presents. A nice card will suffice. This keeps us focused on the kids, but also keeps us from going broke. I can honestly say, it wasn’t until I had kids that I really understood the concept that it is better to give. I love watching the Reisig kids rip into their presents. But, I love something even more than that.
I love my family. I love that at Christmas there is no business to be conducted, there’s not a million different demands on my time. I love that we get to spend time together without the distractions of everyday life. I love that we have a home, and food to share. We are blessed in this way. I think this is what the Apostle Paul meant by our verse today: “So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content.”
Contentment is a realization that it’s not about what we get – it’s about what we’ve already received. Yes, it’s OK to look forward to the presents, food, and candy. However, life will go on without the latest Xbox game or iPhone. Those things fade away. But, life with God lasts forever. Let me challenge you in this life, family. Let’s not forget the God who has provided for us all year.