Today’s Scripture Reading: John 3:16
A few years ago, when my second son was about 5 years old, the family was gathered excitedly around the Christmas tree after our traditional Christmas morning family devotion, eagerly looking forward to tearing the wrapper off our presents.
For my wife and myself, this was to be a markedly different Christmas for us on the gift buying scale. We were going to get the boys a gift that we could not even afford at the time!
There was the time when the kids were younger and we could get away with buying token, not so expensive toys for them from the Argos Superstore, but now they were getting older, they were getting more savvy and demanding in their expectations for Christmas.
This particular year, even though we were struggling a bit financially, we decided to push out the envelope and saved and scrimped to be able to get the boys what at that time, was the most desirable toy for children their age – The Sony Playstation.
We managed to put the money together just in time for Christmas, and it was with great joy and pride that we wrapped up the gift and put it under the Christmas tree – and I’m sure we were more excited about Christmas coming than the boys were. They were going to get a big surprise – they were getting a dream gift; a gift to end all gifts for Christmas.
That was what we thought!
The gift was the biggest box under the tree; the boys made a beeline for it as soon as we finished praying, as my wife and I looked on with anticipation, expecting a joyous reaction from the boys when they saw what was in the box.
What happened when they opened the box was totally mind numbing.
Our younger son took one look at the unwrapped gift and uttered one single word: RUBBISH!
Without saying anything else, he dropped the box and walked away.
Picture the scene if you can. Our disappointment, the hurt, rejection, anger; so many unspeakable, un-christianly emotions converged into one in that instant. A gift we had gone out of our way, reached beyond our ability, sacrificed to give, was being rejected as “rubbish” and being thrown right back in our faces!
But as it turned out, we found out later, that all that the 5 year old boy wanted for christmas, was just a £25 Spiderman costume, and not a £265 Play Station! The love language that we were speaking had been lost in translation.
Every good and perfect gift flows from Him
One of God’s main love languages is Giving. He demonstrates this explicitly and constantly in His dealings with us.
Later on as I thought about the incidence of the unwanted Christmas gift, I realised that that is precisely how we have sometimes treated the Gift that God has given to us in Christ Jesus, and the gift of His Holy Spirit and of His holy presence.
God is constantly giving to us; He’s the good Father from whom every good gift flows.
God has gone to great lengths to offer these precious gifts to us, wrapped up and packaged in Salvation as an expression of His love language spoken to us; but we sometimes rubbish His offerings to us, when we don’t get what we want, or because we think we deserve something else.
Gift giving is a universal love language that is spoken and understood across cultures and times.
It is natural to give to what you love. What you give to, not only shows what you love; it is also a measurable expression of the depth of your love for that person or thing.
The question that we asked earlier on in the series – How deep is your love, can as well be rephrased: How deep is your pocket?
When you have responded to the love languages of speaking words of affirmation and giving of yourself in acts of service to God, you still need to show further proof of your love for God by giving tangible gifts of your substance in addition.
Giving Gifts is God’s love language; do you speak that love language too?
How well do you speak it; how often do you do it?
Pastor Wale Ola
1. What is God saying to me in today’s message?
2. What was ministered to me in the bible verses that I read today?
3. What are the changes or adjustments I need to make in my life to align with the word of God?
4. What is my commitment to the word for today?
5. What practical steps can I take to benefit from the word I have read today?
This Week’s Memory Verse: Romans 12:10
Thank God for the precious gifts that He has given to you through Salvation.
Ask God to forgive you for the instances that you have rejected or not appreciated His love gifts for you.
Lord please give me a generous spirit and a giving heart that reflects your benevolent nature.
Break me free from every limiting and withholding spirit, and give me the grace to be a channel of generosity.
Lord, please bless and prosper me to be a blessing for Your glory.
Song For Today: Good, Good Father – Originally by Chris Tomlin