Monday, November 10, 2014

"The Gift We Give"

(Thanks to my dear brother and friend Ryan P. for inspiration on this one)

"The Gift We Give"  

   What do you give to the person who has everything?  In the approaching season, the question may come to mind about those to whom we desire to bestow a Christmas gift and blessing.  Concerning the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the issue presents an even more interesting consideration.

    "The earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein" (Psalm 24:1).

   Just as He made and sustains all things and all people, "the Possessor of heaven and earth" owns everything that exists, including ourselves and our possessions (Genesis 14:19).  By definition, it is therefore impossible to give anything to the Possessor of all things.  Scripture nevertheless references "gifts" and "freewill offerings" we present to the Lord as the expression of our love and devotion to Him (Leviticus 23:38).  How then do we give to the One who has everything?

    The answer presents a fascinating intellectual and personal potential to our hearts, and for our hearts.  In essence, faith is the gift we give to our Lord.  When we acknowledge the truth about Him in the Lord Jesus, namely, that all things belong to Him, we come as close as we can to actually bestowing a gift.  We align our hearts with His heart, as it were, acknowledging the truth that saves our souls and pleases God.  Again, we don't actually give anything to Him.  He already owns it all.  Our knowledge and affirmation thereof, however, blesses the heart of God, even as the writer of Hebrews declares of trusting Enoch: "He had this testimony, that he pleased God" (Hebrews 11:5).  Our faith means so much to the Lord that He experiences an emotional pleasure that would not exist in Him had we not trusted Him.  This is a gift, a gift to the One who has everything.

    Several years ago, the young man who inspired much of this message testified of seeking to "give" his children to the Lord.  As he prayed, the realization occurred that his family already belonged to God.  His prayer thus changed from "Lord, I give my children to you" to "Lord, my children are Yours, and I acknowledge this truth with praise and thanksgiving."  This was Ryan's gift to his Father, not the gift of the children who already belonged to Him, but the gift of faith whereby he pleased God by acknowledging with devotion who God is.  Indeed, my friend and brother brought pleasure that would not have existed in the Lord had faith not existed in Ryan.  This was a gift, a gift to the One who has everything.

   I find these truths to be sublimely overwhelming.  That all things belong to God, well, how many paths of fascinating Biblical consideration proceed from this great truth?  Even more, however, that we possess the potential to elicit pleasure in our Father's heart by trusting Him (pleasure that wouldn't exist otherwise), well, what can one say about that?  The thought stills my desire to proceed, and thus I close to seek a place of prayer that acknowledges to God the truth of who He is in order to "give" the only possible gift we can bestow upon the One who has everything…

"Give unto the Lord the glory due unto His name.  Bring an offering and come into His courts."
(Psalm 96:8)

Weekly Memory Verse
   The Lord will give strength unto His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace."
(Psalm 29:11)

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