“Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given us…” Romans 12:6 (KJV)
As I wound my way into town, a Christmas CD played in the car – an instrumental version of “The Little Drummer Boy.” I sang along with the melody, and a mental image of the little boy popped into my head. A child, wanting so desperately to give a gift to the Child yet fearing he had nothing good enough to offer.
I thought about his dilemma and his creative solution. All he had was a musical gift, to play the drum. The gift he gave was to play the best he could. And he earned a smile from the Christ Child.
The traditional story got me to thinking: do I give my best, or do I settle for less? Any gift I give shouldn’t just be Good. It should be the Best I can do. There is no job too large or small, no offering too unimportant to undeserving of the best I can do. My best effort, my best heart, my best attention to detail.
When I was growing up in Grace Baptist Church in New Orleans, I belonged to the Girls’ Auxiliary. One of the songs we sang, practically an anthem for us, was entitled “Give of Your Best to the Master.” If I close my eyes for a moment, I can still hear those young voices enjoining each other to do our best for Jesus, just as the drummer boy did.
Each of us has strengths and weaknesses, and there are some things in which we excel while other tasks may seem heartbreakingly difficult. Jesus does not demand that we do everything perfectly, but asks us to use the gifts He has given us to do our best at whatever we undertake.
It’s a lesson to remember, not only at Christmas, but all year round!
Dear Jesus, You are God’s Best and He sent you for me. Help me to remember always to give You my best in return.
© 2008 Mary Beth Magee