In my previous post I talked about “My Best Gifts for My Grandchildren.” Today we are looking at some even better–though rather intangible–gifts.
So it’s Cyber Monday. And I’m online shopping for my children and grandchildren. I bet you are too.
In the short run, they so appreciate receiving the “things” they want. In the long run, though, they will be far more grateful for gifts that will last their whole lives.
After all, they didn’t exactly love the clothes you got them last year. Or that movie with a good message. Or even the fun—and expensive—family trip to Disney—everyone wanted to do something different.
Tired of trying to choose the best Christmas gifts for your children?
They probably have more things than they need, and won’t really appreciate your gift if it isn’t exactly what they want.
And wouldn’t we rather give them something lasting and meaningful? So even as I make purchases to give to the kids, I keep these three gifts in mind and try to find things that will contribute to their growth in each area.
When I was fairly new into parenting, I found myself making some wishes for my children. If I could choose three things to give them that would help them have a great life, what would they be?
I did come up with three fairly comprehensive concepts to wish for and pray for and hopefully give to my kids. So here they are:
Gift#1 A Relationship with God
Knowing God is foundational for life and the relationship that makes all others possible (1 John 5:20). A relationship with God offers forgiveness of sin, power for living, love, joy, peace, patience, wisdom, an eternal family, courage, comfort, perseverance…I could go on and on.
As I pray for my children and grandchildren, I find myself coming back to this most basic need of all: to know God. To really know Him as Father, Savior, Redeemer, best friend, counselor. So when I don’t know what to pray, this is where I go: “Lord, may they know You.”
Gift #2 A Good Character
A good name is to be more desired than great riches; favor is better than silver and gold. (Proverbs 22:1)
Character influences reputation, which affects our relationships with people, our confidence level, and our ability to achieve. Character helps determine the contributions we will make in life and will contribute to peace of mind and a clear conscience.
Good character qualities to seek to grow in our children include integrity, responsibility, humility, generosity, discernment, kindness, self-discipline…and a sense of humor.
Gift #3 A Useful Life
What is a useful life? One that utilizes gifts, abilities, talents and opportunities for the glory of God and the benefit of others.
Why is this important? God has created each of us for a purpose. He has given us what we need to fulfill that purpose, and he expects us to use those gifts, multiply them, be a good steward of them. (Matthew 25:14-30). So we need to help our children discover who he has made them to be and what he has designed them to do.
As our children grow into useful lives, they will sense their value, enjoy life and know they are contributing something significant.
My children are all grown now, with children of their own. Though they continue to grow—and I continue to pray—there is plenty of evidence of wishes come true, of gifts received and lived out. I am grateful.
What about you? What gifts are you hoping to give your children?
c2012 Judy Douglass
Related article: My Best Gifts for My Grandchildren
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