Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Do THEY Know it's Christmas? Give Life

DSCN0705, originally uploaded by chanchanchepon.

It's been a little difficult getting back into the groove of blogging and catching up with multiple tiny projects and people who I haven't seen since before thanksgiving break. But I should be getting back in the groove now.

So we are continuing our series at h2o Do THEY Know It's Christmas? and this week's message is entitled Give Live.
You know I think that one of the biggest temptations in the Christmas season is to forget about those who live on the fringes—I mean the real fringes. I think we have this huge fear that we are going to miss out on something if we don’t have everything we desire. But we have sooo much more than we need, and I think there is a purpose in it all. I think that maybe Jesus gave us so many resources and so much wealth so we could actually use it to bless others.

Another option is that he really just wants to give us tons of nice stuff solely for ourselves, and he really doesn’t care about other people, but I strongly doubt that.

Jesus tells us in Luke 12,

"Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

God has given us the ultimate blessing by giving us access to the Kingdom. He tells us to sell our possessions—not because our possessions are bad, but because we can give to those who have REAL needs when we see our own excess, and we can demonstrate to others what life looks like in the Kingdom of King Jesus. If we took serious as Christians our charge to be ambassadors of the Kingdom, I bet we would make a major dent in poverty in our world.

Where are treasure is, there is our heart. Where are you looking to find your treasure? Ultimately, our treasure is Jesus, but it is so easy to believe our treasure is found somewhere else. In fact, marketing companies are spending billions to make you believe that your treasure and your life is made up of the abundance of your possessions, but it is simply not true.

I think deep down we don’t want to ignore those who have nothing, it’s just that we get duped into believing we are the ones who are deprived. It’s really easy to feel like we don’t have enough stuff, and fail to have a heart of gratitude. I mean, how much do we really need. How much could we give up for the sake of others if we took the time, or took advantage of the opportunities around us?

How much would we be willing to share? We take for granted so much stuff in our world. Sometimes I think we get our priorities all wrong at Christmas, and really all year round. Having nice stuff isn’t a bad thing—I hope that I am not coming across that way; it’s just that I think that we can spend so much time, effort, and energy on ourselves that we neglect some really great needs in our world.

As you consider Christmas this year, and as you consider your life in the years to come, will you consider ways in which you can show your love to your fellow man and remember “the least of these”? You alone may not be able to end hunger, but maybe God wants to use you to help take a step toward one more person not going hungry. You alone may not be able to bring clean drinking water to the world, but maybe some of your spare change can be given to help “one of the least of these” to get access to medicine that will prevent them from dying of dehydration from diarrhea or other ailments.
Maybe as a family, or as a small group of friends you can do something for people who you’ve never met. People who won’t be receiving the latest ipod, or something from the fall line at banana republic, but who simply want the technology that will allow them to afford medical attention for their family. . People who don’t have any use for a cd or a plasma screen tv, but who simply want to hear the sights and sounds of another day of life.. People who have no use for a gift card at the olive garden, but who simply want to have enough food for their family today.

Maybe this Christmas you can start a new tradition of caring and Give Life.

1 comment:

Pam and Mike said...

wow, what a message! makes me really examine my life....good for me, but not for the needy. I'm getting ready to write my goals for 2008 and this has stirred some new goals to consider. Thanks for your wisdom. happy holidays