One of my favorite television shows is “The Big Bang Theory.” If you are unfamiliar with the show, you really should watch it is hilarious, the sitcom follows the life of 4 geek scientist and their female neighbor throughout their everyday geeky lives. My wife’s favorite episode is titled “The Bath Gift Hypothesis”. This was one of their Christmas episodes and in it, Sheldon, the geekiest of them all, explains that he does not participate in the normal tradition of exchanging gifts as he considers it to be receiving an obligation rather than a gift.
As you can see in this episode, Sheldon feels that receiving a gift from someone obligates him to purchase a gift of equal value and appropriate to the level of friendship of the two individuals. He goes on to state that this reciprocal gift giving, once started, must then continue until one of the individuals dies which in turn will leave the remaining gifting partner left on an unequal level of gift giving. Therefore, he avoids the situation by not participating.
As a result of Penny already having purchased a gift, Sheldon is forced to go shopping. But the real laughter takes place when Sheldon receives his gift from Penny. His reaction to receiving a rather unusual gift is priceless. You can view the entire 8 minute clip by clicking on the video below. Unfortunately embedding is disabled for this video so you will be taken to YouTube to view the video. The first part of the video contains Sheldon’s theory about gift receiving, but you must see the reaction to his gift at the end of the video.
I do find this episode extremely funny but every time I watch it I have the same thought. ”I am so glad that God doesn’t think like Sheldon when it comes to gift giving.”
God’s grace is available to all who will receive it. There are no strings attached. No reciprocal gifts to purchase. In fact, God is always left “holding the bag” because there is nothing that we can do to deserve His grace and nothing that we can do to repay all that He does for us.
God gave us His Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ died on the cross for me and for you. I certainly can’t repay that debt by shopping and Bath and Bodyworks. The good news is that He doesn’t expect us to repay the debt. Instead it is freely offered to all who will accept it.
I am grateful each and every day for all the ways that God has blessed me and my family. And I am especially grateful that I don’t have to go out and find a gift to reciprocate.
These gifts are available to you as well. All you have to do is accept them and you too can have the same reaction that Sheldon did. After all compared to God’s grace, Leonard Nemoy’s DNA looks like a gag gift.