“Through love serve one another.” Galatians 5:13

Stonerise Care Blog

Devotional: Anticipating the “Holiday Season”

By Pastor David Jones, Stonerise Manager of Chaplaincy Services

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16) “And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.” (John 10:28) “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Rom. 6:23) “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” (II Cor. 9:15) “Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” (Heb. 13:15-16)

With the recent turn of another calendar page, we find ourselves fast approaching another “holiday season”, requiring the gearing up of our plans and traditions that seem larger and more intense than anything else during a calendar year. In addition to all our normal routines and responsibilities there are the eagerly anticipated parties and meals, travels and visits, shopping and celebrating, decorating and baking, and on and on it goes.

The approach of Thanksgiving and Christmas is a wonderful time of year and looking forward to it and then enjoying it can bring great joy and blessing to share with everyone we know. But, let’s not forget what is at the core and center of it all.

God was the first “Giver” as He creatively invested Himself in designing the wonders of creation and then in blessing mankind with His image and a relationship with Him. As man transgressed God’s law and became separated from Him, God’s plan to redeem man from sin and renew that relationship was put into effect. And when we turn from our sin to trust the Savior, we find God to be daily loading us with His blessings and graces. He loves to give good gifts to His children! (Psalm 68:19; 103:2; 116:12; Matt. 7:7-11)

Just as God loved us before we could love Him, so He initiated His giving to us before we could respond appropriately. Our initial and continual response should be one of heartfelt gratitude for his creation, for our salvation, and daily care. But then we can also give as He has given to us; we can give in His name, for His purposes and for His glory.

So, as we approach these holidays, lets practice “Grateful Giving for God’s Glory”, as I’m calling it. Let’s review daily all of God’s gracious goodness to us and then with humble gratitude, find ways to pass on His goodness to others. Let our giving and the attitude with which we give, honor the Lord and bring great blessing to others in His name. May our giving to others bring them to know and appreciate God’s goodness to them and cause them to pass on His grace to others as well.

As we do so, we will bring great “…glory to God in the Highest and on earth peace and goodwill to men.”

For Prayer Today
-Ask God to guide your holiday planning with these thoughts in mind.

Prayerfully,
David A. Jones
Stonerise Manager of Chaplaincy Services
DJones@stonerisehealthcare.com

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