"What do you really want for Christmas?"

Santa asks the children. Husbands ask their wives. Wives ask their husbands. Children ask their parents. Parents ask their children.

The answers are as varied as the individuals who respond to the question.

  • My two front teeth.

  • A new car.

  • An iPod.

  • An Xbox 360.

  • Clothes.

  • New phone.

  • Cash.

These are all legitimate answers, but are they what we really want for Christmas?

At the risk of coming across as sentimental or just another Christmas cliche, here are a few ideas that may prove more meaningful and enduring than the newest gadgets or the latest fashions or the hottest new toys.

What I really want for Christmas is a genuine love for my fellow man.

But, it is hard to feel love when the traffic is heavy and lines are long. It is hard to feel love for the person who ignores the "Twenty items or less" sign and leisurely unloads her full shopping basket of goods. Loving my fellow man is not so easy when I hear of the horrendous things that are being done to innocent children. It is hard to express love in a world full of hate, and greed, and deception.

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. (1 John 4:7-12 NIV)

What I really want for Christmas is authentic peace in my soul.

But, it is difficult to find peace as battles rage around the world. It is hard to be at peace as nations wage war against each other. Peace is not easily found in the midst of unrest and discontent. Where is the peace when a family falls apart?

They are available.
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:4-7 NIV)

What I really want for Christmas is inexpressible joy.

But, joy is hard to find in a hospital waiting room. There is not much joy in learning of another marriage on the brink of disaster. The joy seems to fade as age and disease take away our strength and drain us our energy. There is little room for joy when bills pile up, disappointments break our spirit, and the pettiness drives us toward bitterness and rage.

Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls. (1 Peter 1:8-9 NIV)

What I really want for Christmas are those things money cannot buy, time will not devalue, and no one can take from me.

What I really want for Christmas are things that no person can give me, and no tragedy can diminish. What I really want for Christmas are gifts from the God who promises love, joy and peace to those who give their lives to Him and follow His Son in a life of service.

What I really want for Christmas are things that I can possess if I will accept them for what they are: gifts from the loving Father. They are available. They are real. They are found in a real relationship with Jesus Christ.

What do you really want for Christmas?