What if you had a wonderful gift for someone you love? Let’s say you spent hours trying to find just the right thing for them. You saved your money, sacrificed so that you could afford that very perfect thing. You wrapped it up with great anticipation and presented it to the one you love—giddy inside at the thought of look on their face when they opened this gift from your heart. You give it to them, and they look at it and say…
“No thank you.” And they hand it back to you with their eyes filled with tears.
Your jaw drops onto the floor in shock. “But I got this just for you!” you exclaim, “Do you not like it?”
“No, it is EXACTLY what I need in my life. In fact I have been wanting it for as long as I can remember.”
“But I don’t understand,” you say in bewilderment, “Then take it.”
“No, I can’t. I just don’t deserve this.”
Relieved that they really do like the present, and are just being modest you try to hand it back. “Oh, come on. Take it! I got it for you because I love you. Just take it.”
“No, you can give it to someone else. You could not have really meant that for me. I can’t mean that much to you. Just give it to someone else.” and they turn away.
They have refused the gift of your heart and it stuns you. You cannot make them believe how much you love them. No matter how much you beg them to take it, they won’t, convinced that they are unworthy or that they are just one of many in your life. You go home with the box in your hand.
That is exactly what we do when we reject the gift of God’s love. He sacrificed His own Son for you so that you will not have to worry about paying for all of your sins. He made you, then called you, so that you could be with Him forever—not because He had to, but because He wanted to.
He wants YOU–with all of your faults and all of your missteps. He is God. He can create anything, has everything, but He wants YOU.
He does not accept you because you can do things for Him. We think it would be better if He needed us to do His work—that way He would be indebted to us and He would have to keep us around. We could say to ourselves “See, I am worthy because I have something He needs.”
But the fact is that He does not need anything. He wants you because He loves you. He simply wants to be with you. He offered the gift of His Son, the gift of His love, the gift of His Spirit and His promises and heaven. Don’t send Him away with this perfect present that He bled for and suffered for. Don’t reject it in the name of humility. Real humility is humble and grateful, not shamed and rejecting.
1 John 4: 4:10Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son [to be] the propitiation for our sins. ASV
Romans 5:6 For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. 11 And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation. 12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned– 13 (For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law. ASV
One of the million blessings He has for you, along with His Son, is something you so desperately need—peace.
Phil 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. NIV
Now being anxious about nothing, to our frail human minds (mine included), does seem impossible. But it is not impossible. Anxiety is a habit; it is a pattern; it is a sin. But we can overcome ALL sins, even anxiety. The Lord Himself promised that if we were not anxious, if we gave our worries to Him by prayer and with thanksgiving, then we would have peace that passes all understanding to guard our hearts and minds.
What does that mean exactly? That means that He will take our offering of faith (which is our presenting our requests to God and trusting Him), and He will bless us by giving us peace. He will give us peace even when we have danger or troubles.
He has made a way for you, right now, to have peace, right this second. He gave you His Son, Jesus, who opens the door for even more gifts, even more blessings, that the Lord has for you.
Peace in good times is easy. However, He promises peace when the wolves are at the door, when the mortgage is overdue, when the diagnosis is bad. Our situations might be bad but He offers peace for our souls.
But we have to believe Him, not society nor ourselves. We have to accept His gifts, we cannot turn away. Then we can truly see His gifts for us and start using them. We will then see that His promises are true, that we can rest in His blessings for us. In these times, we are not chastised, as sometimes we must be. Instead our faith is grown through blessing.
I think this is where people learn that deep spiritual faith that moves mountains. I think this is where Christians go from speaking with their mouths to believing with their hearts. I think this is where mighty and powerful working in the Lord can take place in our lives…when we step out in faith of His promises and gifts to us.
So this is one way we grow–and what a great way to grow! This is my favorite way of spiritual growth. Sometimes we grow through trials, sometime through blessings. THIS is growing through blessings. The more we believe His promises, the more we, well, believe His promises. Our faith grows and strengthens because we see Him work in our lives.
But if we do not obey then we cannot be blessed and we cannot grow from the blessing.
Remember: There is nothing new under the sun. Every hurt or temptation that we endure has already been endured a billion times over. The Lord knows more than we do, He made us and knows what only He can do for us. He told us not to have anxiety, to believe in Him. We are to be Jesus sleeping during the storm. Not merely not panicking, but actually sleeping. We are not to be the disciples saying “We are all going to drown!”.
Understand that the hard work is already done in Jesus. We already have the Holy Spirit. We already have the Lord’s blessings, we just have to use them. TODAY you can believe in the Lord with that deep joyful faith that endures through bad times instead of disappearing. You can be anxiety free. The Lord has promised peace and joy and a sound mind and wisdom. He gave it to you, you just have to trust His gifts. You have to not turn away from them, either in shame or fear.
These gifts are for you right now.
Hebrews 11: 1 Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. NIV