I've been thinking about "Spiritual" Gifts this Christmas
"If you want something done right, do it yourself." Have you ever felt that way? Of course you have, that's because it takes patience to help a small child to learn skills like cooking or house cleaning. They make so many childish mistakes that it usually feels better to do it yourself. Honestly, sometimes the best gift you can give to the child is to help them learn by doing. Showing this kind of patience reminds me of the many gifts we can give each other at Christmas and all year round. The Bible has lists of "Spiritual gifts." I love to study the "gifts" and see them implemented in the family of God. I've also thought of the variations of abilities that are not mentioned in the Bible. It is interesting how the interplay of "spiritual fruit" and "spiritual gifts" works. From the example above, it takes a lot of patience to be a teacher, especially of small children.
Every day you are giving gifts to people... because YOU... and the Christ who lives in you, are the gift. Now, think about the kind of gift you are. The first "word" or "look" that you give people is a signal to them whether you are a gift they want to unwrap. Everything you do or say is either a gift they will remember, or a gift they will chuck into "file 13."
Matthew 25:35 "I was a stranger and you welcomed me." (Welcoming people is a spiritual gift.) Prov. 18:16 "A man's gift makes room for him and brings him before the great." (If you are available and answer His call, Christ will make you able.) Prov. 25:14 "Like clouds and wind without rain is a man who boasts of a gift he does not give." (Giving is not just good intentions, it requires your best effort) I Tim. 1:6 "Fan into flame the gift of God." (We all can sharpen our skills and work at being a better servant.) II Cor. 9:7- 8 "God loves a cheerful giver." (Your greatest gift is an attitude of joy and love when you give something.) Heb. 6:10 "For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work of love..." (Your gift and work is either a gift from a heart of love or it is of no value whatsoever.) I Peter 4:10 "As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace." (Whatever you give is a personal gift from God to you, so that you may serve others.) II Cor. 9:15 "Thanks be to God for his inexpressible, indescribable gift!" (God gave His very best! He gave of Himself when He gave us Jesus!)
Here are some of the greatest gifts you can give.
First, one of the most precious gifts you can give someone is your attention. Put the smart phone down and look someone in the eye. Ask them a question and don't take your eye off of them until you have heard them out. To connect with people you have to be present in the moment. When you give someone your full attention and respond to their heart, people feel understood.
Second, give the gift of simple kindness. Mark Twain said, "Kindness is a gift the deaf can hear and the blind can see." Small acts of kindness add up. Help carry someone's groceries, tell someone to go ahead of you in line, call to check on a sick friend, make a pie for someone for no special reason at all.
Third, give the gift of time. When you give your time, you give your life. Invest in people by prioritizing your relationship with them. Take your commitments to people seriously. Book time with friends, stop and shoot the breeze with a neighbor.
Fourth, give the gift of acceptance. I know, we just can't accept other people's evil. However, unless you have earned the right to speak into the deeper parts of someone's life, it is best to not blast away at their weaknesses and faults. And even if you have earned that right, use it sparingly. For every criticism, people need at least five kudos.
Fifth, never underestimate the value of an honest complement. A word of thanks or appreciation or praise can make someone's day! If someone gets enough of those days, you can turn their life around. If you see any progress toward a goal, any advancement at work, or even a nice new hair style, a positive word can be such an encouragement.
OK, these are not the spiritual gifts mentioned in Romans 12, but, they are really the common gifts that have become uncommon in the fast paced world in which we live. Your neighbors and friends need them all this Christmas and all year round. Remember, we need each other! So, start serving with these gifts.
When I got that BB gun for Christmas as a child, I started using it that day. I became pretty good at shooting it, too, but that never would have happened if I had left it in its box. The best way to learn how God has gifted you to serve as a member of the body of Christ is to serve (1 Peter 4:10). Start with what you are asked to do and see what makes your heart beat fast. You may specialize in just one or two areas, but, get busy doing the very thing He gifted you to do all along for Him.
God has placed a gift under the tree for you to open. If you knew there was a gift for you under the tree, wouldn't you want to open it? You know you would! By faith, begin now to unwrap the gift God has for you. And remember, none of your gifts will work without love—so focus on your love walk and receive and use your spiritual gifts this Christmas!
Lord, we celebrate the greatest gift ever given to mankind, the indescribable gift of Your Son, Jesus Christ. We thank and praise you for this wonderful Christmas present. We celebrate Your gift to us and pour out our gifts of love to You and to others this Christmas time. Make our worship of You the most important part of our Christmas this year. Amen!
Now, be strong and be anointed! God has gifted you with His Holy Spirit and power! Receive it! Take it! You can finish your course. You will be strong with God's help! Focus on Christ and let love be the key to your spiritual gifts this Christmas!
What Can I Give Him? The beautiful Christmas hymn “In the Bleak Midwinter” has a verse that says, “What can I give him, poor as I am? / If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb; / if I were a Wise Man, I would do my part; / yet what I can I give him: give my heart.” This Advent, as we give our hearts to Christ, we have an opportunity to give ourselves—all that we are. To give ourselves to Jesus means to discover the fullness of who we were created to be and find ways to give our unique gifts back to Him through the ministry of His church.
This Christmas we have a goal of giving practical gifts to needy people around the globe through Samaritan's Purse. A gift of chickens, goats, or tools can be such a blessing to people who have nothing.
What's Happening at Faith Fellowship:
Each Sunday -- 10 AM Worship service @ 2497 State Hwy 35, Luck, WI Dec. 15 -- Pearlgrace (see below) bringing our music / Message: Mary, Did You Know? Dec. 22 -- Christmas Sunday / Roller family doing special music Dec. 29 -- Final 2019 worship service
Pastor Ken Mettler- 715-483-9202 / firstname.lastname@example.org ...
Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life” (John 8:12).
Christmas lights can teach us about how to share the True Light at Christmas. Everyone needs a light. We stumble in sin until the Light of Christ penetrates our darkness. How do we point people to the true Light during the Christmas season?
1. Ask to read the Christmas story out loud. The Word of God has amazing power in itself, so ask those you are celebrating with if you can read part or all of the Christmas story in Luke 2.
2. Ask to pray. As you sit down for a meal with friends and family, simply ask to thank God for what we celebrate at Christmas.
3. Be the Light. Jesus tells people, “You are the light of the world… let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16).
This Christmas season, let’s point people to the great Light of the world, the Savior of all peoples. Let’s also be lights, ourselves, showing the greatness of the love of our Lord by reflecting him to a world that lives in darkness. Remember, wise men still follow the light! ...
There was a time when news of last days' significance was sporadic. In the last decade, that has all changed. The stunning convergence of events is no coincidence and while there could be over 100 events to list - here are the top 10 of 2019.