Dec. 16, 2016

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Christmas season is a time for giving and follows the example of God’s gift to mankind – Jesus Christ. This isn’t some myth, legend, fable, or children’s tale. Jesus is a historically-documented person. Thousands witnessed His power. His story would have died out a long time ago if He were something someone made up.

Faith is required when you choose to believe. 

Around this time of year, we will see the best and the worst in people. I sent a gift card to a family member using the postal service and it was stolen before arriving at his home. News sources have reported incidents where thieves follow delivery trucks around and then they remove packages off front porches as soon as the delivery men drive away. 

Here comes Santa Claus…

Most cities have collection sites for toys to provide for families in need. The question arises, “Are they really all in need or are some taking advantage of the system?” I can’t find anywhere in the Bible that God instructs us to determine intent. That’s His job.  I do find lots of examples of His desire for us to create loving, giving, compassionate systems that display His loving heart, His giving Spirit, and His compassion towards all. We have a responsibility to do the right thing. Judgement and wrath rests on His shoulders.

I find Christmas time similar to everyday giving in the church. We give based on faith. God commands us to support His work in the world through our local church. He doesn’t call on us to scrutinize every financial decision that is made; although most churches have a budget process that allows everyone’s input. I think back to the days of Jimmy Swaggart and how money was mismanaged. One of my elderly friends supported his TV ministry and was devastated to hear that funds were misappropriated and misused. 

Guess what? That’s his fault; not hers.

God sees the intent of every heart. We cannot be and we are not held responsible for the misuse of money by others when it comes to our giving. Our call is to give.  Leadership’s call is to be wise and good stewards with our gifts.  God’s job is to convict and to discipline those who take advantage of a good thing. 

Merry Christmas to you and yours. Please remember: Christ is the gift that keeps on giving….accept Him.

*The artwork entitled, “Christmas Lights,” is copyrighted along with this blogsite.