I woke up this morning thinking about these lines from Christina Rossetti’s Christmas poem “In the Bleak Midwinter.”
What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
Yet what I can I give Him: give my heart.
We are all poor compared to his riches, we are all fools compared to his wisdom. The only thing we can give that truly matters is ourselves. We don’t give ourselves in a violent, self-denying kind of way that eats away at our humanity, nor is this about a martyrdom as the terrorists preach. Giving ourselves to the Lord is about choosing to order our lives around his values every day.
Few people will tell you the truth, though. It is far harder to give him a lifetime than to give him a singular moment. The paradox, of course, is that a lifetime cannot be given unless it is a stitched together quilt of one singular moment after another.