I could hardly sleep on Christmas Eve because I knew what awaited my sleeping daughter. A few weeks before Christmas, I found an online sale for the new LOL house. She'd mentioned that the toymaker LOL was releasing a new model several times throughout the year, but she didn't add it to her wish list when Christmastime came. I assumed she'd noticed its high price tag and doubted we'd buy it for her.

What she didn't know was that I'd both found the house marked down and I carried an unused gift card in my wallet. Thanks to that (and a few extra dollars from editing projects), we splurged for an awesome Christmas morning surprise. The gasp that followed her wide-mouthed, wide-eyed reaction was everything I'd dreamed.

Throughout Christmas day, and for the two weeks since then, my daughter has talked, played with and enjoyed her surprise gift nonstop. It still brings a smile to my face each time I think about her reaction to the surprise. She'd asked us for LOL toys, but she didn't expect to receive the house. She'd requested what she thought seemed feasible, reasonable and possible. But this year we could give so much more. She received a gift we will all always cherish and remember.


The Father's Love for Us

During the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught about Father God's gift-giving style. (Applied to today's world), He explained how if imperfect parents gift their kiddos Christmas morning surprises, just imagine what a perfect Heavenly Father who reigns over everything can do. Christmas morning is a small taste... a shadow... of the blessings Father God wants to give us as His kids. He loves us with a lavish love. 

The things we dare not to ask for, God wants us to ask and keep seeking. We don't need to be children trying to protect him and avoid asking for over-the-top. Childlike faith means we go for it, and we pour out our hearts desires. We can trust that a loving Heavenly Father is hearing us, attending to everything we say. 

Our Heavenly Father wants to heal our relationships and make our sick bodies healthy, he loves to provide job opportunities, houses, meals, clothes and more. He softens hard hearts, establishes friendships and builds families. He listens to all of our prayers, and at the right time, He answers them. Why? Because He loves.

Prayer: God, help me bask in your lavish love. I want to experience the surprise and wonder of knowing and experiencing your grand love for me. Show me how to position myself to receive it. In Jesus' name. Amen.

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! Matthew 7:11 (NIV)

This devotional first appeared in the Monday Morning Survival Guide. Subscribe to get next Monday's devotional emailed to you.

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