At last, a student finished his senior year thesis after working so hard for an entire year on its research and writing. He proudly said to his mom: This is my gift to Jesus on his birthday this Christmas!


The mother gave a quick wise advice: I’m glad you’re thinking of offering your efforts to the Lord. But remember son, you can never outdo God in generosity. Everything you have, or do and everything you are now and in the future… it’s all his gift to you!


Even with a good intention, at times we can be forgetful of this wise reminder. It’s a great thing to look back and be grateful to God and to desire offering to him our achievements. More than this however, the Lord wants us to realize that even our gifts to him are blessings we have first received.


David almost forgot this in the first reading today (2 Sam. 7). Now settled as a monarch, he thought he could do God a favor by building him a temple. Through the prophet Nathan, the Lord God recounted how first of all, he build David up and built for him a kingdom.


God took him from the pasture to the palace. From insignificance to fame. From weakness to victory. From his lineage, God’s promised Messiah will come. David cannot measure up to all these. But he can be truly grateful and humble for having such blessings.


This is where the Blessed Virgin Mary truly becomes a distinctive figure in salvation history. No trace of pride, no tinge of boasting, no desire to reciprocate. All she wants is to receive God’s gracious action and be grateful. After she heard the angel’s proclamation (Lk 1), she expressed her willingness to do as God wills. She humbly embraced God’s plan.


We have been taught that the best way to show our thanks is to return the good we have been given, to perform an action that will show how appreciative we are. However in God’s eyes, it all different. He does not need anything from us because he is the source of everything. His giving never ends. His mercy will never be exhausted.


God desires a gratitude that shows itself in humble acknowledgement of blessings received and in faithful conformity to his will. As Christmas approaches, what gift can we really give to God? Not our accomplishments, not the product of our hands, not any material present. God desires our faithfulness and humility before him.


Let us ask the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Joseph to show us how best to welcome the Lord Jesus on his birthday. May they teach us true gratitude for the greatest gift of God in his Son Jesus Christ!


Pls share with a friend… photo used her came from the internet, thanks much!