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Giving of yourself

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life – John 3:16

Festive seasons have become too much about perfect gifts haven’t they? Shopping and extravaganza. The joy of the season has been overshadowed by the pulls of budget and need, and a compromise between the two. Stress and then disappointment. All hard realities. The gift might be used or thrown away or (surprise!) make its way back to the original giver. These worries have replaced the spirit of a Christ-like Christmas. Though the poor are far from the world of gifting let us first define the ‘perfect gift’. Something rare, sorely needed, and great if recycled.What else but love? And untiring support. And understanding. And forgiveness. Seeing and listening.Oh, life itself!But is anyone rich enough to offer these?

Now consider God’s gift to man. The very love, support, understanding, seeing eye, listening ear and forgiveness that we crave. Life– eternal and in all its fullness! Perfect. A gift that expects this in return that we take, enjoy and pass it on.Foremost to that poor man or woman who is far from our world of gifting. Lonely, cold, trapped and broken,they’re the ones most starved of love, support and understanding.Know this Christmas that if you could be there for someone who is thinking ‘even death would be better than this’ you’ll have done it right for once. Know also that God’s gift – free and abundant – will keep you going strong.

‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ – Matthew 25:40

Jaya Philips
Consultant

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