SANCTIFIED SATURDAY

Why do we give presents to each other on Christmas day? The gifts are an expression of our joy over the birth of Jesus and our love for each other. The beauty of Christmas is not in the Presents but in His Presence. I believe anytime we show love for one another, it pleases God. However sometimes we get so caught up in the Presents we forget about the Presence. God has already shown us that the most precious gift cannot be bought or sold. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). In giving us this gift, God gave us His Son’s Presence. And all He wants from us is a portion of ourselves, for us to spend time with Him, to be in His Presence. The fact of the matter is the reward we get is much greater than the time we  give. This is more valuable than any Present we could give to God; as a matter of fact it is the most valuable Present we can give to each other. And again the reward we get is much greater. Think about it, our time is precious. Tomorrow is not promised, even the next minute is not promised. It is good that we proclaim aspirations for 2019, but at 11:59 on December 31, we could cease to exist in this temporary home. I know, I know, it’s a time for celebration and no one wants to think about this! However, it is The Word (James 4:13-15) not my word. And I believe if we give it some thought, we would use our time more wisely. Our time is priceless! The Bible says make the best use of our time. First and foremost we should seek Him and to do that we must spend time in His Presence. Then we should give our Presence to others. Everyone loves to receive Presents, myself included. But the greatest gift I have ever received was the Presence of a friend when I really needed her. She has given me much, but her Presence in my time of need, I will never forget. Presence: visit someone who has no family, invite a struggling family over for a meal, volunteer,, spend time with the elderly or someone who is housebound, call someone you haven’t spoken to in a while, write letters of appreciation, adopt a family, babysit for free, visit the hospitals or rest homes, just to listen. I could go on, but you get my point. Presents are good but Presence is Priceless! While celebrating the birth of Jesus, read Matthew 25:35-45. When we do these things, Jesus is pleased! It is His birthday; the best gift we can give Him is our Presence in the life of others! And not just those in our circle or those who love us, but love up on all of God’s children. As Christians, we should exhibit more fellowship, compassion, and care with one another. Trust me, life becomes peaceful and we get this unspeakable joy when we grasp the reality and goodness of God’s constant Presence living within us.  This time of year can bring out the worst as well as the best in people. I love this time of year! I love the lights and decorations but more importantly for me it brings out gratitude, thankfulness, caring for others, taking time to give others my Presence. It means giving of myself because of the gift God gave me, and believing in magic and miracles! What does the Christmas Spirit mean to you? This Christmas season and throughout the New Year I pray we take time to grace someone with our Presence. Those who know me know I celebrate my birthday the entire month, but I celebrate the birth of Jesus 365 days a year!!!! Merry Christmas my brothers and sisters! Read today’s scriptures in “Food for the Soul” Love and Blessings…

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