Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | September 14, 2013

September 14, 2013 “Snakes, Stones and the Creator of Kindness”

“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” (Matthew 7: 9-11)

Good Morning Friends!

Well…it has started already! Yesterday I saw my first retailer “Christmas season” commercial! Though Christmas day itself is still three months away, we’re encouraged to start getting ready for it now so it doesn’t sneak up on us and we’re left unprepared! And here we are with summer not officially ended! As bizarre and annoying as this commercial might be, you can be sure that your children (especially the younger ones), have already started to imagine what would make the perfect Christmas gift. A little later, (which with the trend of things could be sometime next week!) when they start playing Christmas music on the radio, you may hear the song “I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas.”  As amusing as this might be, the wise parent would never go so far as to indulge the child by granting this outlandish request. Most parents know how to give good and proper gifts to their children, and seldom if ever would such gifting include the likes of a hippopotamus!  In Jesus’ teaching, he reminds us of God’s wisdom in giving good gifts. The child in Jesus’ example is wiser than the one in the song I just referenced, asking for bread and fish- both good and necessary items. If the child had asked for a stone or a poisonous snake, would the wise father have granted the request? Of course not! There are times as we pray when God understands the thing we are praying for might be a “snake”- like winning the lottery, for example- and we are not given what we ask for, despite our persistence. As we learn to know God better as the loving Father he is, we learn to pray for those things that will truly be a blessing to us and not harm us, and will also glorify God. God is not selfish or stingy. He is a loving father who knows us better than we know ourselves. If we who are sinful at heart know how to give good gifts to our children, just imagine how kind the “Creator of Kindness” can be! Let’s pray!

Kind and merciful God; Indeed, You are the giver of ‘every good and perfect gift.” Thank You, Lord, for not indulging our every whim by giving us whatever we request, but by generously granting our requests for those good gifts that will truly enrich our lives and bring glory to Your Most Holy Name! Accept our gifts of thanks and praise to You throughout this and each new day, Lord. Amen!

 

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