Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variations, neither shadow of turning.
– James 1:17
How easy it is to give! Write a check. Sign up for the silent auction. Contribute to the fund. Are these good gifts? Of course, and easy, too. There’s a catch, though. In order for us to receive the heart-filling, soul stirring emotions of compassion and love for others that are God’s gift to us on this earth, we must give help within the context of relationship to our fellow humans, and to our Father. Hands-on with eye contact and open heart. Caring for one another, for our earth, for all creatures, is our gift to give. No gesture is too small if we are seeking to serve God and not ourselves.
By giving with “relationship,” we do a better job of caring for those in need. Best of all, we are prepared to receive the good and perfect gifts which God provides for us, and a deeper relationship with Him.
I love the Prayer of St. Francis.
“Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy.
O, Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love; For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life.”
Now, that is relationship!
PRAYER: Lord, enable me to feel the hurts and needs of others, the way you feel mine. Allow me to receive your gifts with an open heart.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: It is in giving that we receive the good and perfect gifts from God.
written by Kathryn Gatlin
Let us do life together, growing closer to Jesus, and closer to each other, through stories and experiences from the people of our church. Join us as we begin a new series for the Advent season, beginning Tuesday, November 28.