I sit here a few days before Christmas and the sky outside is grey. Even though I can’t see the snowy peaks of the Front Range or the crystal blue above them, I know they are still there and I think of them.
I look around my studio and see all sorts of things: a pair of fingerless gloves, a jar of pigments, a stylus, a shell, a tiny blue jar, a book, a pair of boots, a box of encouragement cards, my coffee cup, and on and on. All these gifts are, in a way, stand-ins for the loving friends who gave them. I know they are still there and I think of them each time I see the object.
The value of each of those gifts is not what it cost, but the person who gave it. We understand that when a small child gives us a rock or a flower. We still need to remember that when an adult gives us something.
Thus it is with God who gives us Jesus, a stand-in on earth, that we might remember that we are all connected to God and each other.
So give gifts with abandon. Big and small. Accept gifts graciously. They connect us to one another.