Modern Day Magi

O. Henry’s marvelous short story, “The Gift of the Magi.” is a classic about a down-on-their-luck couple who sacrifice their dearest possessions to buy Christmas gifts for each other. The husband sells his pocket watch to buy some combs for his wife’s lovely hair. And she cuts off her lovely hair and sells it to buy a chain for his cherished watch. That story speaks to us at this time of the year as we give gifts to those whom we love.

O. Henry concludes his story this way: “The Magi, as you know were wise men – wonderfully wise men who brought gifts to the Babe in the manger. They invented the art of giving Christmas presents…. And here I have lamely related to you the uneventful chronicle of two foolish children in a flat who most unwisely sacrificed for each other the greatest treasures of their house. But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest. O all who give and receive gifts, such as they are wisest. Everywhere they are wisest. They are the magi.”

Friends, let us not forget this Christmastime that there are Magi walking on the earth today as well. You and I are the Magi, as we give from hearts overflowing with love because of an even greater love shown to us. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life (John 3.16).”  May the gifts that we give include the telling of the story of the Savior who’s birth we celebrate … and in giving, may God bring some loved ones to Himself.

Read “Gift of the Magi”