Every good and perfect gift

calendar_todayTue 29th October - 10:27am
person_outlineRebecca Roberts

I imagine by now, for many of us, we have started to think about Christmas gifts; who we are buying for, and what we are buying for them.  What gift might you choose that will bring joy to the recipient?  Gift giving can be really challenging!

Several years ago, I remember buying a rather strange gift for my Granny.  She loved West Highland Terriers, but now in her 70s and residing in a care home, the dream of having one would be just that, no more than a dream.  So, on a Christmas shopping trip to London, wondering what I would buy for family members, whilst in Harrods gift shop I stumbled across a battery powered walking West Highland Terrier.  Even by Harrods standards it was not an expensive gift, but was one that lit up my Granny’s face that Christmas morning.  I remember her being wheeled back into her care home that afternoon with her new pet walking beside her, and face beaming!  For Granny, this simple gift gave her great joy, despite the adversity she had faced throughout her life, and especially in her later years.

I wonder, what gift have you received that has given you the greatest joy?  What is it that brings you true joy?  The writer of James says “Every good and perfect gift is from above,coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights,who does not change like shifting shadows.” (James 1:17)

Also at the beginning of James’ letter, the writer talks about how we face trials and temptations in life, from things that are uncertain and temporary.   In contrast, the greatest gift we receive is absolutely perfect and lasts for eternity.  In our changing and uncertain world (as I write this article, I’m very aware by the time it is published the world we are living in could be a very different place!) where do we place our trust, and what is it that we trust to be permanent and certain?

For me, and for many of you, the only permanent and certain thing I can put my trust in is God himself; my heavenly Father who is the only true gift of joy.  No matter what I receive on 25thDecember, what happens with Brexit, I know that I already have the greatest gift ever, through the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus.

This month, as you consider what gifts you might purchase and give to your closest family and friends, please consider what gift you might give back to our generous God, through your church.

As we near the end of the year, as a church, we are looking at a substantial shortfall in our income against our expenditure, which means we will not be able to pay all of our bills.  The PCC, and especially our Treasurer, have worked hard all year to try to make the numbers balance, unfortunately this has not been possible. (John Bailey explains the situation in a separate article in the magazine this month.)

Please, this month, as you plan for Christmas, pray about what your response might be.  On Sunday 24th November, we will be having a Gift Day.  Special envelopes will be available in church for you to place your gift in.  Alternatively, you can make a direct transfer through your bank, or even pay a donation on the new card machine we have.

May we be a grateful people, who show our gratitude to God who is infinitely more generous than we could ever be.