Christmas time is the most wonderful time of the year. There’s a special peace and happiness in the air as we come together with friends, family, and loved ones to celebrate the birth of Christ, our Savior. We get together to laugh, eat and enjoy one another’s company. Then, we have the privilege to exchange gifts that show the love we carry for each other all throughout the year.
Gifts, by definition, are something given voluntarily. I love you, and because I love you, you don’t have to twist my arm to make me show adoration towards you. I do it of my own will, without prompting, because you mean that much to me.
That’s what makes this time of year so special. (After all, it was God’s biggest gift to humanity that gives us cause for celebrating in the first place.) It’s not the big dinners, twinkling lights, or the carols (though we enjoy it all). It’s the love and adoration shown when gifts are given and opened with a rejoicing heart.
We go through much trouble to find and carefully select that perfect gift for that special someone. I mean, you just know in your heart that they are going to love it and you can’t wait for them to rip off that wrapping paper, rejoice with gladness over the special way you thought about them, and immediately start using that gift you gave.
Now, consider this. What if, when you gave your gift of love, they toss it to the side in disregard saying, “I’ll get to it when I get to it?” You would be so crushed, hurt, and disappointed over their uncaring way of receiving your gift.
What if God feels the same way? Not only did He give us THE BEST GIFT that we could never live without (His Son, JESUS), but in our relationship with Him, we have been freely given many other gifts. Not only is a gift something given voluntarily, but it is also a special ability or capacity; a special talent to be used for the edifying of Himself through you.
In the book of Matthew, chapter 25, Jesus told the parable of the talents. One man was given five, one was called to receive two and another received one. What is ironic is that the two to whom the most talents were given increased and prospered one hundred percent. Now, we would think their master was unfair in expecting so much from them. After all, he did give them more responsibilities than the other.
Through perseverance and diligent work, not only did they gain a little but they doubled what they started with. Sadly, the one who was only given one responsibility, only one job, one talent let fear stop him from increasing and prosperity. He said, “I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine,” (Matthew 25:25). Instead of being made a ruler, he was made a disgrace. Instead of living with abundance, he was deemed unprofitable and cast into outer darkness (vs. 30).
Living a life of unprofitableness is living a life of darkness. There’s no joy or peace, only weeping. This is not the life that God intended for us to live. The special stuff that God put on the inside of you and me was never meant to be buried and hidden from the world. We are meant to shine as a beacon of light into this dim, dark world and show them who God is and what He wants to do for all mankind through the abilities, gifts, and talents He has put in us.
What you have in you is too good to hide. Don’t keep it to yourself. “For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath,” (vs. 29). To some, this may seem like an unfair statement, thinking, Why do they get more when they already have some? And, why are they going to take his little bit of stuff away?
Instead of questioning and overanalyzing the story, perhaps our time would be better spent if we were to pull out our own shovels and start digging. Dig for your talent. Unearth it from deep within and don’t give up until you have pulled out every treasure that God has put in you. If when you pull your treasure up, it turns out to be only one thing, then, you work that one thing with hard-pressing diligence until it has increased and doubled to two. Then, you work some more until that two doubles to four and so on.
‘Tis the season for opening gifts. God has already given them to you. Don’t let fear stop you from unwrapping them. God took great care in picking out the perfect gift for you and He can’t wait for you to rip off the wrapping paper and begin to use it. God gave it to you because you mean a lot to Him and He knows that you would be great in using it.
Don’t toss it aside. Whether your gift is humble or outrageous, open it and bring it to the Savior! You may be surprised at what you find.
We have just a little ways to go before we celebrate the best gift ever: JESUS! Soon after that, we will be bringing in a New Year. What better time to unwrap all that good stuff God has placed in you?
Have a very blessed and Merry Christmas, always thanking God in advance for the greatest gift of His Son, our Savior, JESUS CHRIST!
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