Imagine you had a really, really wealthy friend.
He comes up to you one day and says “Hey, how about you come over and hang out with me next Saturday at my place? It’ll be fun!”
You show up to his mansion on Saturday, amazed at what you see – the indoor pool, personal theater (complete with recliners), and gigantic gym are just the tip of the iceberg!
As your friend shows you around the house, he sees you gawking at some of the items in his closet. With a smile on his face, he picks out what you’re eyeing and casually hands it all over to you saying, “Here, I want you to have this – it fits your style!”
Next, you find yourself in the kitchen, and your friend has had his personal chef create you a feast of all your favorite foods — including dessert! When you get to the media room, you see several of the classic movies you love to watch all lined up on the shelf. Your friend turns to you and says, “Thanks so much for coming over! I’m really glad that we’re finally getting a chance to spend some time together – I really like hanging out with you! Can I grab you anything from the kitchen before we start on a movie?”
You look over at your friend and reply, “Dude – I absolutely LOVE your home. It’s the most beautiful house I’ve ever seen. Your closet is filled with the nicest clothes, and the food here is the best I’ve ever tasted. I’ve seriously had such an amazing day, and you know what would make it even better? Could you leave me the house keys and head out? I really love everything you’ve got going on here… I just don’t want to share it with you!”
“Oh, and I’ll have a Pellegrino. Thanks!”
I know that this type of situation seems really far-fetched and unlikely. Sure, maybe some folks would be a little gentler with the way they shared these thoughts, but in essence it’s all the same.
How could someone say something so rude,
ungrateful, and insensitive?
And yet, this is the type of thing we do to God all the time.
“Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.” | James 1:17
These gifts have a wide definition! There are so many gifts God has shared with us, including fashion, creativity, money, education, relationships, interests, people – even art! That doesn’t even cover half of it! There is no problem with loving the gifts God has given us. As any good gift-giver, He loves seeing us happy and enjoying the things He places in our lives.
Problems begin to arise when we turn those good things into gods, allowing them to completely fill our lives in a way they were not meant to. Instead of fulfilling us the way we think they will, they fall short and we become discontent again until the next infatuation. This never-ending cycle is not only unfulfilling, but also a
c o m p l e t e
waste of time.
Everything we could possibly ever need can be found in our relationship with Jesus. He isn’t Santa Clause. He isn’t a vending machine. He isn’t a feel-good theory.
He loves and cares for you. He wants to give you all the good things in life, and for you to enjoy them in a healthy way.
God wants to be known as more than just your Gift-Giver.
While His gifts are good, He will always, always be better.
“I’m thankful for so many things, but most of all God. Without Him, I’d have nothing else to be thankful for.” | Unknown