Wednesday, December 20, 2017

The Perfect Gift

            Years ago a friend sent me a Christmas card with a large check in it. I wrote her a note back and said in a teasing way, "How did you know what I wanted for Christmas? This is the perfect gift." Then I enjoyed dreaming about what I would do with this gift. 
            Final Decision? I gave my grandchildren something special for Christmas, paid a bill, and spoil myself with a small gift I would never have considered. My mind connected with the Bible verse, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father…James 1:17 (KJV) It struck to me that at Christmas we all got a perfect gift from the Father.
            This gift paid the debt called sin that we couldn’t pay. This gift can be given to family, or any one we choose. And this gift spoils us personally with treasures that are just for us. We receive trinkets of peace and joy, and answers to prayers that only He knew we wanted. The perfect gift…Jesus.
Prayer: Give us wisdom on how to share your all-inclusive gift.
Question: Who can I give the Father’s gift to this week?
Scripture: “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” 2 Corinthians 9:15 (NKJV)

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Terrific Thirty Three

Merry Christmas. Happy Easter. Terrific Thirty-three. We celebrate Jesus’ virgin birthday. We celebrate his victorious death. But thirty-three years on planet earth with sinful people was no small accomplishment. Jesus’ time on earth examples how we can live a victorious life every day.

I can hear you whining….  He was God so it was easy for him. I’m a human it’s hard for me. No, Jesus was called Son of God and Son of Man. He lived his life on earth as the Son of Man. If he hadn’t Satan would have called, “Foul.” The plan of redemption would not have been legal if not accomplished by a Second Adam.

Remember Hebrews chapter four reads, “But we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.” We don’t have record of Jesus’ life between twelve and thirty-three. But every way means every way so it includes your temptations.

How did Jesus as a man live this sinless life? Remember Jesus not only dealt with bad Pharisees. The biggest hurts came from good brothers and disciples who didn’t understand him. Jesus kept a direct line open to his Father. He did nothing unless he saw his Father do it.

1 Peter 2 describes his victory this way. When he was insulted he didn’t insult back. When he suffered he didn’t threaten them. He didn’t argue or explain to others. Instead He talked and committed it to his Father who judged each situation righteously.

Peter has the nerve to tell us that Jesus’ life is our example as we live our lives.

We press toward the mark for a prize. The goal is perfection. Aim for the stars. If we fail we thank God for forgiveness.

But don’t wake up tomorrow and think, “Today I’m going to sin.” Wake up and shout, “Today I’m going to win.” Thank you Jesus for a Terrific Thirty-three!