Every year when Christmas comes, I have a dilemma. I want to give my husband a gift that will blow his mind, make him remember it all year, and know that I am head over heels in love with him after 14 years and five children. He is a wonderful and loving man, and he is always appreciative of whatever he receives (socks included!), but he’s just not as dramatic as I am about expressing it.
A while back it occurred to me that I was seeking, not so much to please him, as to get a reaction from him that affirmed me. I became more determined, not just for my husband but for all on our gift list, that I would give gifts that were truly meaningful and long-lasting. I have a project this year that I pray will do just that.
I’ve been creating journals for my husband and each of our children. I have done this since the kids’ births, but I this year I am creating mini-journals just for Christmas. I found little brown ruled hardcover books, and throughout the year as I have been inspired, I have written notes to them. Even more importantly, often as I have journaled my own personal devotions, I have done it in their books. If I read a passage that inspires, challenges, or convicts me, especially in relation to one of the children, I write it right into his or her book. I share my dreams and hopes for them, as well as my own personal challenges and desires to see God work in my life.
I know there will be days as they grow that they are struggling in life or that they are less than pleased with me. There will be days when my own frail humanity will override my love for them in their eyes, and I pray that they will be able to have a glimpse into my walk with Jesus. I pray that just as we are able to look into God’s word for the intimate stories of His people and their daily struggles and triumphs, my children will be able to walk with me on my journey. I pray that more than anything, my sharing in this way will be a tool to draw them towards God’s word and closer to His heart.
This gift may not have them jumping up and down and screaming as they tear off the paper, but I believe it will be a lasting legacy that will be someday called “well done…,” and that’s a Christmas gift I’m glad to give.