December 25, 2022

The Greatest Gift for Christmas

I’ll preface this blog post with the fact that Jesus doesn’t need our gifts. Jesus, however, loves when we come to Him and love Him with the entirety of our lives, leaving no room for offering Him portions of our lives, but the whole. One of the greatest gifts for Christmas that we can give Jesus is our entire lives.

What does giving Jesus our entire lives look like? Is He not just after our love and devotion to Him? Yes, He’s after that, but our love and devotion to Jesus should lead to good works that are done in Christ Jesus for the glory of the Father.

‘Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership. Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all. Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.’

I Timothy 4:14-16 NKJV

Giving God Our Entire Lives

It is easy to be working on a particular task and opt to not give it your best. I recall times in school when nearing the end of the semester, I would check my grade and thus decide whether to give a homework assignment or exam my all. I figured so long as it was an A and the score would not take me to a B, then I can live knowing I’ll only exert enough effort as was needed so that I can allocate my time doing other fun stuff. The problem with that is that it may work in the world’s system, but the kingdom of God does not operate in this manner.

When Paul instructs Timothy to meditate on the gift within Him, on the Word of God, and on the various things he’s to give himself to for the glory of God, Paul wasn’t telling Timothy to give a half-hearted effort. Paul instructs Timothy to specifically give himself ENTIRELY to them. Entirely encompasses the whole, not just a piece. We are to give God the best of our lives.

If we’re to give God our very best, this means that we treat every endeavor with utmost seriousness, meditating on the question: “Am I giving God my best right now?” Only you can answer that for yourself. If you had the propensity of getting a 100 A in an exam but only acquired a 90 A, would you consider that being successful? I know some of you reading this may consider it successful, but if you knew that you could get the 100, then those missing 10 points show that you did not measure up to the success intended for you.

You may look at another person and deem their 70 C score as unsuccessful compared to your score, but you could have accomplished a 100 A. When Christ comes back, there will not be another person to compare to when your works on this life are being laid bare for judgment. You will only be compared to God’s original plan for your life.

Not Called to Be Lukewarm

In Revelation 3:16, the church of Laodicea is depicted as being lukewarm—neither Hot nor Cold. Because of this, Jesus will spit/vomit them out of His mouth should they not repent. I have met many believers in Christ who seem to live their lives aimlessly, binging on the entertainment of this world instead of redeeming the time by spending time with God to learn of His will and then doing it. It’s a scary reality to be in because as Christians, we should be living life with a target!

Jesus makes it clear to His disciples that they ought to love God with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength, along with loving their neighbors as themselves. He also instructs them to preach the gospel and make disciples of all nations. One thing that I always encourage believers that don’t quite yet know their “assignment” or God’s will for them (regarding career, vocation, etc.) is to simply love God with your all and be a witness so as to make disciples. The knowledge of the assignment and the next steps will come, but in the interim, we should live our lives doing what He’s already instructed.

I don’t know about you, but I am petrified at the thought that I could be vomited out of His mouth at any time should I fail to love Him and thus produce works worthy of Christ. Because of this, I cannot compare my life to others and grow complacent should my life look “better” than others. God is wanting my entire heart, and that is what He shall receive.

Give God Your Best

Jesus laid down His life for us, leaving His glorious, heavenly abode for a tattered, earthly one. The King of kings yielded to the Father so that through faith in His name, we would be restored to God’s original intention of living eternally with Him free from sin. This was no cheap exchange. This was costly!

Where are you currently in this spectrum? Are you giving God your best, or are you giving Him portions of your best while leaving other portions of your life untouched? The Father gave the very best for you—His Son, Jesus Christ.

This Christmas, remember His birth and remember that you too have been reborn unto a new life as a new creation when you accepted Jesus into your life. This is a new life where we don’t rely on our own strength to give God our best; We get to lean on God’s grace to give us the necessary wisdom, knowledge, and strength to be all that God created us to be in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 2:10).

The greatest gift you can give Jesus this Christmas (and onward) is every aspect of your life in submission to His lordship. I pray you would give Him that today.