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SCRIPTURE - Jas 1:17                                                                                   DECEMBER, 2005

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.


Here we are, counting down the days, to the biggest day of the year, for just about everyone, for giving gifts. In case you were born yesterday, I am referring to Christmas.

During this season, the season of giving gifts, many of us, fail to remember, the main reason for the season, and perhaps the greatest gift of them all, that God has given us, and that is His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ.

Now, I don't mean to ignore the meaning of this holiday season, but I want to look at another type of gift, that God, in all His wisdom and mercy, has given, and continues to give us.

The reason for this, is that there is a huge misconception as to just what, God, gives us, and what the enemy gives us. And because of this misconception, God is, in many instances, praised, or blamed, for things that happened, as a result of what happens to the recipients of these so-called, God given gifts.

The way the world looks at it is, if they get anything that makes life appear better for them, even for a minute, they will give God the praise. And truly, all good things that come to us, do come from God.

However, the perception of just exactly what is good for an individual, is another matter. For, what might be good for one person, could be a disaster, for someone else. Therefore, if God knows everything, and He loves us, and wants only good things for us, as evidenced by what He did for us, so that we would have a right to eternity in Heaven, with Him, don't you think that anything bad, that happens to us, as a result of something that He gave us, is totally out of character, for Him???

Of course it is.

If you will look at the subject scripture, it gives you a specific idea of just what it is that God gives us, in the way of gifts.

First, it says, 'every good gift,'

Now, a good gift, from God, is a gift, that truly, will be a blessing to its recipient. It will provide a means for him to prosper, and achieve great things. It will cause him to realize that truly, God is good, and a provider of things that the recipient needs, to be a blessing to not only himself, but his family, and those that know him. And, most of all, it will cause him, to glorify God.

Whatever the case may be, all things are going to result in a positive outcome.

There are no dark consequences associated with it.

Yet, if we look at what many people consider as being from God, we see that once they receive it, they tend to have all types of problems with it.

It tends to bless them for a short while, then they begin to go downhill.

It takes them to the lower dregs of societal relationships, it causes problems for them, and may even destroy them.

Now, if you look at the second part of that scripture, it says, 'every perfect gift.'

So, in reality, everything, that God gives us, becomes a total blessing, with no dark consequences attached to it.

Let's look at a few examples of what I am talking about.

It is a natural thing, if you ever need one, to want a spouse. After all, if you want to have a family, the way God designed it, then you would have to start out with a spouse.

Now, I know some people that have prayed for a spouse, with a carnal mentality, and then set out to not only find a spouse, but pursue one, based on all the wrong reasons. And, in some cases, they will set about, to have the one they want, without seeking God.

Then, if they just happen to get the one they are after, they proclaim that God blessed them with their spouse.

After they get married, things go good for a while, or maybe not, then, all hell breaks loose. They consistently fight. The financial situations deteriorate, they cheat on each other, and are totally unhappy.

Soon, they are in the divorce court, claiming irreconcilable differences. And as a result, a divorce is granted, and both lives, are just about ruined. And in some instances, in extreme cases, violence takes place, and imprisonment, or death results.

Now, what kind of gift was this??

A spouse is provided, supposedly by God, and results in a marriage, that turns out to be a disaster.

What does that say about God??

Or, take the case of those that have a need for money. After all, we need money to survive. And, I am talking strictly about those that have a legitimate need for money, to feed themselves, and or, their family.

Well, God provides a means for them to achieve these goals through work.

Now, with all things being equal, and without going in to all of the different scenarios that could apply, the job, is sufficient to supply all of their needs, with a some left over for savings.

However, they see it, as being insufficient, because they see what someone else has, and they feel cheated. So, they start to pursue some other means to get more money. Now, for this particular scenario, I am not going to go in to areas of criminal activity, but I am going to use the same thing that God has provided for all of us, and that is jobs.

Now, let's say, the person gets a job, that pays a lot more money. So, to many, that is a blessing. But, remember, their motive for pursuing this job, is that they felt that their first job, the one that God provided, was somehow inadequate.

So they start that new job, and things are going just fine. They begin to get the things that they want, that they see others enjoying.

And then, after a while, things start going downhill, as the company they are working for, has to cut back, and they lose their job. Now, they have to find some way to make ends meet. They are facing, losing their home, their car(s), and other valuables.

They start to go to the casino's, playing the lottery, and other forms of gambling, hoping to make that 'big score', that will get them over the hump.

Now, how did this all come about?? Because the gift that God provided for them, was in their mind, inadequate, because it didn't provide them with what they wanted, and that was, to be able to keep up with what their neighbors, or other friends had.

The second job, paying more money, seemed like a blessing from God, but now, a disaster has taken place.

Was this really a blessing??

No!! It was a curse.

Now, in both of the scenarios presented here, and in the millions of others, that take place, the subjects, pursued goals, based on one particular factor, and that is, they went after things, based on what they wanted, and not waiting on God to provide them with additional blessings, in His own time.

The bible says that God, will not withhold any good thing from that 'love Him.' Psa 84:11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.

You see, God, provides for all of us, the things that we really need. When we get impatient, with the blessings that God provides for us, to meet our needs, we then, open ourselves up to receive, what appear to be blessings, not from God, but from the Devil.

You see, when it comes to what we need, versus what we want, there is a difference in who it is that will provide them.

Many of us, seem to think that God, is a type of genie in the bottle. You just rub it, and out He pops, and asks, 'What can I do for you, master.??'

When the bible says, He will provide all of our needs, and not all of our wants. When the bibles says, He will give us the desires of our hearts ,,,,,,,,,,(Psa 37:4 Delight thyself also in the LORD: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.) it does not mean, what people try to make it out to be. You see, when we delight ourselves in the Lord, then our only desires will be, what is pleasing to Him, and not ourselves.

If you look at a 'gift', you will find that it is something that someone gives you, without any work, or request from you. You don't have to chase it down. You don't have to track it down. You don't have to look for it. You don't have to pay for it. And you don't have to risk anything in trying to get it.

There things that we see others with, that we may desire, but God knows, that if He gave them to us, we would destroy ourselves, or others. So, He withholds them from us, until such time as He knows we will be able to handle them.

Take for instance, a large sum of money.

Using myself for an example, it would certainly be a welcome addition to my bank account, and a help in eliminating my bills. But, I am content with what I have right now, knowing that God knows what He is doing. It is totally possible, that if I were to get a large sum of money, I might get a 'big head', and start acting like a total idiot, which would only serve to make people not want to be around me, or should I say, the right type of people??

Anything that God gives us, will be totally beneficial to us, and will give Him the glory, in everyone's eyes.

However, the devil, has other ideas.

First, he wants us to believe that what he gives us, comes from God. Then when it destroys us, or a loved one, and makes us look totally foolish, God will get the blame.

Make no mistake about it, Satan is out to destroy us, and our relationship with God. And he will provide us with whatever we want, if it will accomplish that purpose.

It behooves us, that name the name of Christ, to realize just what is it, that we are doing, when we murmur and complain about what we don't have.

David, even had a problem when he said, Psa 73:1 Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart. Psa 73:2 But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped. Psa 73:3 For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

We could take a lesson from David.

Let those around you prosper, and don't worry about what you don't have.

When it comes right down to it, if you have Jesus, you really have all that you will ever need.