Presents or Presence?

I’ve been reflecting on the last ten days or so. I made a week-long trip to the San Jose area to visit family and friends. Arriving to pick up a promised checks from work I had performed, they profusely apologized for the misunderstanding and, instead mailing the checks. Having no credit cards, I had to navigate that week with the small check they did remit.

I left Auburn, just missing my only Christmas present, an incredible edible arrangement, courtesy of a dear friend. But what a delight it was with family and friends! Sunday, at the singles group, with whom I have a decade old connection, they took up a spontaneous offering in appreciation for my work on their website. I was stunned by this unexpected display of giving! Needless to say, I made it through the week and arrived home to the awaiting promised checks and was able to pay bills, etc.

The thing that occurs to me today is this: being in a condition of NOT being able to give gifts, I realized I had given the best gift, my PRESENCE! And everyone involved gave their presence. And Jesus gave HIS presence! It is the greatest gift we can give. Someone once said, “the best things are not things.”

It is so difficult, if not impossible, to extricate ourselves from the expectations of people, tradition and the relentless call of marketing. But what I think most people want deep down inside is for someone to LISTEN indeed to them. So when you give them your presence, give them your ear, more than your voice.

And I further believe that the best present we can offer is our emotionally healthy spirituality. Can you begin to show up with, as someone described, “with nothing to hide, nothing to lose and nothing to prove”? That will be the best presentation of your presence.

Perhaps our PRESENCE becomes our bargaining chip for acceptance. There is nothing we should have to do or give, other than ourselves, to be God’s best gift to others. Authentic giving, however, WILL follow authentic living!

So, let’s GIVE us to God anew this season. Then let’s let Him GIVE us back to each other: humbled, grateful, speechless; then pure joy will erupt from our innermost being!

(edited 6/30/2016)

© 2015 David Veliquette. For info. Email me.

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