Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Gift

We have all received a gift at some point in our lives. I think of Christmas or birthdays as big "gift" holidays. Imagine, it's Christmas morning and under the tree are tons of beautifully wrapped packages. After admiring the beauty of the display, you dig in and begin opening the gifts.... right? You wouldn't possibly sit there and stare at the gifts for too long without opening them. And you certainly wouldn't pull out the gifts labeled for you, pile them up, and leave them unopened. I mean, seriously. Imagine adding to your collection of belongings a bunch of unopened Christmas presents and all year just looking at wrapped packages and thinking, "Wow, what a great Christmas of gifts that was!" If you happen to actually collect unopened presents, I would encourage you to open them. I am sure you'll like what is inside more so than the wrapped gift... it'd definitely be more useful to you anyhow!

The Bible says in Ephesians 2:8-9, "For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is a gift of God, not a result of works, so no one may boast."
To start, we have to see the GIFT that God is offering to us! He is offering it, but we must choose to receive it- just like any other gift that can be denied or accepted. And we also must recognize that since it is a gift, we cannot do anything to earn it. Other than Santa Claus and his expectation of "nice" behavior, gifts are given freely... free of charge! Who offers someone a gift and then makes them pay for it? That just is not a gift! Just after receiving any gift, it is best enjoyed when opened and used. The gift of salvation that God offers us is not intended to just sit on a shelf and be ready for our day of death as a ticket into heaven. This gift of God has so much more to offer than that! In John 10:10 Jesus says, "I came that they may have life and have it abundantly." Abundance. He wants us to dig in and enjoy life, in Him, to the fullest.... starting now!

So don't wait to receive this gift. And once you receive it, I hope you choose to open it and enjoy it for all that it's worth. What better gift could there possibly be?!

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