John 3:16: God gave his only Son.
I don’t know if you like receiving presents, but I suspect you do. And I think the best presents are the unexpected ones. It’s one thing to get something on Christmas or your birthday, but it’s different when someone surprises you with something you’ve always wanted. It doesn’t happen often, I think, but when it does, it’s a total joy.
We received an unexpected present this past week when we came home to find a great huge box on our front porch. Now, we get a lot of deliveries, but they don’t come in great huge boxes. They land on our doorstep in boxes that are about, strangely enough, the size of two pieces of music side by side piled about ten inches deep. This unexpected box was about four feet long and a foot wide and deep. Whatever it was, it wasn’t music, unless Joseph Martin had a really strange idea about some sort of magnum opus. But I didn’t think that was it.
When I checked the box, I found it contained a high-performance exhaust system. Then I knew it wasn’t ours since there’s no way it would have fit either one of our cars. When I looked at the address label, I found it was addressed to someone I’d never heard of who lived on a street that began with a “B” and whose house number was 9705. We do live at 8705 Barnett Street, so Fed Ex got the first letter right, and the first number wrong. But the muffler clearly wasn’t something we had ordered.
We called Fed Ex, and, after some wrangling, got them to agree to pick up the box. They wanted to do it the next day, but we allowed as how there were plenty of people out there who might drive by and help themselves to a nice high-performance exhaust system. Fed Ex came while we were out and retrieved the package and that was the end of that.
I don’t think this has ever happened before with a package. We sometimes get misdirected mail, but it’s either for a neighbor or for someone a couple of streets over. We walk it down to the neighbor’s house or put it back in the box for the mail carrier if it’s further away. It’s no big deal.
This episode got me to thinking that God gave us exactly the right gift at exactly the right time when He sent his Son, Jesus Christ. We didn’t have to worry about it being right for us or wonder how it was going to be delivered. All we had to do was accept that gift of grace and love which came to us right where we were, just as we were. And no one can do any better than that. Praise God for the great and glorious gift of Jesus Christ, our Savior. Amen.