By: Tim Sader
A gift opens the way and ushers the giver into the presence of the great. (Proverbs 18:16)
When we were getting to know eachother Sammy and I seemed to talk about everything. I learned all her favorite things and found out she was becoming my favorite. Each of us can be the favorites of the Lord because He is fair to us all when we make Him part of our lives. Soon the holidays were upon us and we had kept our developing relationship a secret. We wanted to figure things out before including others because we didn’t know how it was all going to work out. Thanksgiving came soon after we began talking. That day we had some brief conversations about turkey and all the fixings but spent the day with our loved ones. It was one of the first days we didn’t chat for several hours and neither of us were too happy about that. After that we didn’t miss a day chatting for a while, flirting with one another and talking more about everything. Christmas was fast approaching and we both wanted to do something special to celebrate our journey thus far. So a few days before Christmas we exchanged gifts and they both arrived within 24 hours of eachother. She bought me a book for Kindle called “A More Excellent Way” by Henry Wright and I bought her a silver butterfly necklace with a purple crystal because that’s her favorite color. This was the first physical expression of the feelings we had for one another that might have been noticeable to our families. Buying gifts for someone we hadn’t met in person yet might have seemed wrong to some people but for us it felt like we were making progress. Though neither of us had said much to family and friends about one another we had a tangible gift letting us know we had started something great. These gifts may only have been around 20 dollars each but they represented our willingness to pay a price to be in this relationship. We had no idea this gift was opening a way for us to be in the great presence of each other in less than a month and that our future would be wrapped up in one another.
It is neat to me that a gift has a way to usher the giver into the presence of the great. At that time in my life there was one thing I wanted more than anything else and that was to meet Sammy in person. Being in the same place and enjoying her company was the greatest thing I could dream to do at that time. An amazing thing to me is that as humans we can be so evil at times yet we know how to give good gifts to those we care about. What is more amazing is how much more the Heavenly Father will give good gifts to us when we ask Him (Mt. 7:11). With gifts they say it is the thought that counts but there are bad things that no one would want as a gift. If I had given Sammy spiders as a gift we probably never would have made it to our first date. We all entered into sin by the trespass of one man, Adam, so it makes sense that the gift of God’s grace brings us justification through the sacrifice of one man, Jesus Christ. By the trespass of one, death reigned through him, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant grace and the gift of righteousness reign in life through Jesus Christ (Rom. 5:15-17)! Because the gifts Sammy and I exchanged were good we received them like they were and good things followed because of our exchange. The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (Rom. 6:23). As men we are told to be considerate as we live with our partners who might not be as tough as us. They are co heirs with us in this gracious gift of life and we must treat them with respect so that nothing will hinder our prayers (1 Pt. 3:7). Sammy and I had thoughts about where we wanted our relationship to go but had no idea if we could ever get it there. The only way we partake in this marriage today is because we both have chosen Christ and the Lord thought to give us a gift that is our relationship with one another.
Lord we ask that you would help us to understand the value of giving gifts to others. We remember that gifts speak to the one receiving it; they open up ways for us to be in the precense of the great. Help us to see that we are all great in the eyes of God so that when we give it is best for them. Most of all God may we remember that you have given us the ultimate gifts of grace, righteousness and eternal life when you sent us your only begotten Son. In Jesus name, Amen.
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No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. Luke 8:16