Word-y Gifts for Christian Faith & Life

Are you ready to receive your gift?

Gift photo

Earlier this year, for a host of reasons, I decided it was time to part with an item I had owned and enjoyed for about a decade. Because it still had some life in it, I wanted to give it to someone who needed it. I had just the person in mind and was excited about giving it to her. A few months later, when I was finally ready, I offered her the item and she declined, saying she had settled into a routine in which she could function without it and occasionally used a friend’s. Disappointed, I approached a second person who I also knew, based on observations and past interactions, needed the item. It turned out he had neither the skills to use it nor the permissions required to take possession of it. Moreover, he seemed uninterested in dealing with the inconveniences of acquiring them. I then approached a third person. He declined because although he needed the item, he did not want to deal with the responsibilities of having it. After that, I offered it to an organization I felt confident would make good use of it, and they jumped at the opportunity.

The episode left me wondering how often I had missed gifts that might have enhanced the quality of my life simply because I (a) had settled for a life without them, (b) refused to make adjustments or do the work required to take advantage of them or (c) did not want the responsibilities that tend to come with significant gifts. Hmmm….

The thoughts were sobering because God is in the gift-giving business. He gives us what we need (Matt. 7:9-11) and if we also delight ourselves in him, what we desire (Ps. 37:4) (yes, including those secret desires that we don’t tell anyone about). And, because he loves and knows us completely, he offers us gifts that he knows will bring us deep satisfaction; the kind that leave us shaking our heads wondering, “how could I not have known I needed that?” or “how did I get that?” His gifts, no matter what form they take, are “good and perfect” (Js. 1:17). As we continue along the path of faith, we can be sure of one thing: the gift will come; the question is if we will be ready to receive it.

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