Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. (Jas 1:17)
The very thought of someone who loves us taking the time to select a gift for us brightens the heart and lightens the soul. Thoughtful gifts are for our benefit; when someone who loves us and knows us well gives us something we can be sure they have carefully selected it, considering what we need, what we like, and how their gift will help and bless us. When such a gift comes from a wise and wealthy friend who loves us deeply … we know it will be something to treasure.
How then do we respond to gifts from … God? The wealthiest Friend imaginable … the most loyal, faithful, loving Being in all existence … what kinds of gifts does He give, and how do we respond?
James reminds us that every gift from God is perfect and good; He gives no other kind. He knows us perfectly, loves us perfectly, and He is omnipotent; there is no gift too expensive or beyond His means. He gives exactly what we need, at exactly the right time, for our ultimate good and for His eternal glory.
In receiving a gift from any cherished friend it is only polite to gratefully acknowledge it, taking time to enjoy it in their presence, connecting with them and immediately expressing delight and gratitude for their kind thoughtfulness.
Yet every moment of our lives is a precious gift from God, every step a gift from Him THE WAY, every word of Scripture from THE TRUTH, and every breath a treasure from THE LIFE, worth more than all the world. (John 14:6) What moment should forever pass from us without our being present in it, abiding in it, connecting with it, feeling it, tasting it … enjoying Him, relishing Him … and thanking Him for it? Not one should pass without abiding in it, in Him. (1 John 2:27-8)
Certainly every pleasant thing, every pleasure can be felt a gift from God … yet even suffering for Him, for righteousness sake, is itself a precious gift: “For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.” (Php 1:29) In Heaven no one loves our Father sacrificially. The only time for sacrificial love is now … in this present life; it is a privilege beyond all thought. What will we not give then … for one more moment back down here among His enemies … to show Him what He means to us?
My dear friend, what would our lives be like if we willfully partook of only that which we could accept as coming from His hand? And what if we gladly submitted to all which we cannot reject with the confidence that every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning? Would any suffering be too difficult, any temptation too great? Would any earthly joy be less exhilarating, any taste less exquisite, any color less vibrant?
Let us ask God for the gift of receiving … every moment as a precious gift from God … the perfect gift, at the perfect time, from the perfect Giver. Let us learn to linger in each one … tasting, relishing, giving thanks, connecting … with each other and with Him … rejoicing with joy unspeakable, and full of glory.