The famous Catholic actor of stage and screen, Helen Hayes, enjoyed telling the following story about her favorite Christmas dinner. Although a notoriously bad cook, she decided one year to prepare a Christmas dinner. “This is the first turkey I’ve ever cooked,” she warned her family. “If it isn’t right, I don’t want anyone to say a word. We’ll just get up from the table, without comment, and go to a hotel for dinner.”
In a few minutes she returned to the dining room, where the family had expectantly settled around the table – wearing their hats and coats!
Although our gifts and talents vary, God bountifully gives us the gift of our lives to share with others. Whenever we reach out in love we are most like God. All is gift; even our desire to reach out in love and service to others is itself God’s gift.
At Christmas we celebrate Our Lord who chose to share our humanity so that we might share God’s divine love with one another. This Christmas we are invited to unwrap the gift of God in our lives through prayer. Prayer helps us to recognize our gifts and empowers us to share them with others.
Prayer is the key. Prayer enables us to unwrap the gift of love by sharing our thoughts, feelings and actions. The greatest Christmas gift we can give to another person is the gift of ourselves. In all of the holiday bustle some precious gifts to give are time, attention, and listening.
God’s love dwells within us and is reborn in our hearts this Christmas. May Our Lord open us to unwrap our love as a gift for others. Amen.
Reflection Questions and Activities
- What and who are God’s gifts to you? Give God thanks in prayer as the key to God’s love.
- Remember some key examples of how Christ shared his love? How does Christ share his love today?
- In what ways are you being called to turn the key of your mind, heart and will to love like Christ in action?
- The key gift is the gift of self. What one action can you take to give yourself as a gift to another?