Well another Christmas is in the books! Every Christmas seems to pass more quickly than the last. We had such a blessed Christmas and I hope you all did as well.
Leading up to this Christmas our daughter, who is 10, kept adding to her list and it grew and grew, almost to a point of frustration with her dad and I. We reiterted that Christmas wasn’t about getting but the true joy came in giving and she just didn’t seem to get it. Then…she decided to give a gift, a simple toy she no longer played with, to a younger child who thoroughly enjoyed the toy. The child’s mom recorded a video of thanks to my daughter and my daughter watched it over and over and over again. She finally came to me and said, “Mom, it did feel really good to give that. I love that she was so excited about receiving it.” Praises!!!! She GOT it…or so I thought.
After gift exchanges were done and my daughter was counting her Christmas money, already plotting for her next purchase, I reminded her that ten percent of her Christmas money was to be returned to God through tithing. She was fine until she realized after tithing she would no longer have enough money for the purchase she wanted to make. Devastated she screamed, “I would have enough if I didn’t have to tithe!” I quickly calmed her and described that had it not been for God’s grace and blessing of our family and friends, she would have received nothing. I later reminded her of the video she had played over and over of the girl who had received the toy from her and reminded her how much more God would be pleased at her obedience to put Him first in this area. Thankfully she began to see the gift and blessing of giving and stopped focusing on what she did not have in the moment.
How often are we the same, quickly forgetting all that we have been blessed with only to focus on the one thing we are without? This includes the relationship we don’t have, the job we don’t have, the dream or goal that hasn’t been achieved, a lack of finances and so on. I’ve realized what I put my focus and energy on will grow…so instead of focusing on what is lacking, let’s make a committment going into 2016 to focus on what God HAS done and what we DO have, being thankful for it and trusting Him for the rest. God is a giving God and putting a value on His gifts are impossible. He is not surprised by our blessings or our lack and in every season in every area of our life, we must remain givers. There is always something you can give whether it be encouragement, a smile, a gift, your time…something. Let’s not become disgruntled with our right now, if our right now is not what we thought it would be, only to miss out on the blessing that you can be right where you are. Don’t withdraw in 2016 focused on what is not but believe that what is is exactly what you need to prepare you for what is to come!
John 3:16, “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.”