It’s not the most well-known of Christmas songs. I am familiar with it, though it plays only rarely when I listen to my Christmas music. When I listened to In the Bleak Midwinter as I began to fill the house with the music of the season, though, the last verse caught my attention in a way it hadn’t before.
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 can I give him? I’ll give Him my heart.
I understand the intent of these words, and those in the previous verses extoling the amazing One Who has sent His Son. After all, who isn’t overcome with the goodness of God when grasping the gospel?
John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Who doesn’t want to give back to Him out of a thankful heart? In reality, though, He doesn’t ask for anything from us – not even our hearts. After all, He had to send Jesus to make our hearts pure in the first place. What do we have that hasn’t been given to us by Him?
No, our heavenly Father doesn’t want anything from us except . . . to take from Him. To receive, fully, what He has given, what He has done for us in Jesus Christ.
So, what will I give Him? I will receive His finished work on my behalf. And I’ll keep receiving every new-to-me revelation of Christ in His fullness. In that receiving, He’ll receive all the glory!
Romans 11:36 NIV For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen.