Posts Tagged ‘gift’

2 Cor. 9:15 “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!”

“One Froggy Evening” was a 1955 Looney Tunes cartoon that has gone on to become one of the masterpieces in cartoon history. It tells the story of an unnamed construction worker, helping to demolish an old building. As he is uncovering the cornerstone, he finds a time capsule of sorts. Included in this collection, a frog hops out. Once he spies the fellow looking back at him, the frog dons a top hat, grabs a cane, and starts dancing and singing “Hello, Ma Baby”!

What a gift! A singing/dancing frog! Does the fellow enjoy this gift that he has uncovered? Does he take him home to enjoy the unheard-of talents for such an amphibian? No, he does like most of us would do…dollar signs dancing in his head, he tries to find a way to cash in on his new discovery. The trouble is, every time he tries to show the frog’s talent, the frog reverts to type, sits there and croaks. He’ll only perform for the man and only if it is just the man watching. Through a series of attempts to get rich, the man becomes bankrupt, homeless, thrown in an asylum for being crazy, and finally becoming free again. Spying the construction site of a new building, he quickly puts the box with the frog in it inside its cornerstone, and runs away free. Years later in the future, a spacesuit-garbed “demolition man” is disintegrating the now old building. He find the frog, the frog dances and sings for him,…and history repeats itself as he scurries away with his gift, looking to cash in.

We, as Christians, have come into possession of a Gift offered to us. The Gift of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. He paid the penalty of sin for us, and through accepting Him as Lord and Savior in our lives, guarantees us eternal life in Heaven. A set of dictionaries filled with every positive adjective in the English language would utterly fail at adding to the one adjective used in 2 Corinthians to describe this Gift: Indescribable. As such, we need to remember that we don’t need to waste the precious value of this Gift of God. We don’t need to behave like “heathens” brazenly continuing to sin just because we have “fire insurance”. We need to live for Jesus every day, telling others about Him, so that we can help share this Gift. We certainly don’t need to keep it to ourselves! People will see the value of this Gift, if they see the change that is brought in our lives by Jesus. Remember, we may be the only exposure of Jesus some people might see.

So what are you going to do with your Gift today?

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verse 4: “Wealth adds many friends, But a poor man is separated from his friend.”

I remember an episode of Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids (yep, another Saturday morning flashback!) that concerned a friend of the gang who always had money and toys galore; he said he always got it from his big brother. Fat Albert accidentally broke one of the toys and wanted to make it up to the kid’s brother. Long story short, Fat Albert exposes the brother as a drug dealer; the man gets arrested. The little brother is short-sightedly mad at Albert, telling him that he and the gang won’t be friends with him any more because he stopped his big brother’s “money supply”. Of course, the gang is NOT mad at Fat Albert, they knew he did the right thing and they still respected him and his friendship! In addition to the anti-drug message of the episode, the kid also thought that money could buy friendships.

Unfortunately, that’s truer in the real world than I wish it was. It does seem like money “attracts” a lot of “friends”, and the lack or disappearance of it causes those “friends” to disappear as well. We need to make sure that our friendships are genuine and not based on material things. When Jesus walked the earth, He didn’t have any money, but He offered the greatest gift we could ever have: eternal life through Him. He still offers that gift today; no money necessary!

Have a blessed day!

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verses 13-17:  “Therefore let one who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret. For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful. What is the outcome then? I shall pray with the spirit and I shall pray with the mind also; I shall sing with the spirit and I shall sing with the mind also. Otherwise if you bless in the spirit only, how will the one who fills the place of the ungifted say the “Amen” at your giving of thanks, since he does not know what you are saying? For you are giving thanks well enough, but the other man is not edified.”

Though we’re still talking about tongues here, I see an application to any use of spiritual gifts. If you use your gift only for your own benefit or your own worship of God, you may be edified, but what of your neighbor? Isn’t this a strange form of selfishness?

I know of many blessings I wouldn’t have received in the way God meant, if the deliverer of that message hadn’t shared their gift! I think of pastors who I have heard preach; they didn’t do it for their own glory, but to be “microphones” for God’s voice to us. I think of singers, instrumentalists, and music leaders who share their talents in “preaching” God’s message in music, and of the times I have been blessed or refreshed by that. (My wife and I especially worship in music).

I think of those with the gift of acting, whether serious or with a humorous effect, and the simple but profound word they communicated in a skit or sign-language-like delivery, and the “wow” when I got the point they were talking about.

It doesn’t have to be on the pulpit of a church either. Sometimes it can be in a Sunday school classroom, or a Bible-study, or a fellowship…or even a Bible devotional blog. 🙂

It’s always my prayer (and God forgive me when I forget to pray this!) that when I sing, or play my trombone, or act in a skit, that I do it for His glory, not my own. Sure, I like to hear someone say, “you sang great”….and it’s okay to compliment someone when they use a gift. But I get a return blessing when they say, “your song really blessed my heart today”…and my response is, “thanks, but to God be the glory!”

One more comic book reference to close this thought today: Peter Parker (Spider-Man)’s Uncle Ben said it well: “with great power, comes great responsibility.”

May God bless you today!

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