Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | January 5, 2014

January 5, 2014 “The Greatest Gift”

“Every time your name comes up in my prayers, I say, “Oh, thank you, God!” (Philemon 1:4)

Good Morning and Blessed Sunday Everyone!

Today marks the conclusion of the Christian season of Christmas. It is  generally regarded as a joyous season, full of celebration, fellowship, good cheer and gift-giving. The gift-giving act emulates the example set by the Magi, whose visitation to Bethlehem from their home in the Orient we celebrate tomorrow, the day of Epiphany.  No doubt when you celebrated Christmas in your homes this year, you exchanged gifts as well. Not only do these gift exchanges  remind us of the gifts of the Magi, but also the greatest gift of all…the gift of God’s own Son to the world.  Did you find yourself in a quandary as to what gift or gifts to give to your husband, your wife, your kids? Most gifts we receive are lost in time. Clothes are outgrown or wear out. Toys are played with and broken. Money is spent and gone. Candy is eaten. Vacations are enjoyed, but then it’s back to work. Even the gifts of the Magi were eventually used up. So what can we give to someone that will have a lasting effect and be a continual blessing to someone? Paul knew the answer…the gift of prayer. He told Philemon that in his prayer-gifting on his behalf, it not only blessed Philemon, but also filled his own heart with thanksgiving. Former president George W. Bush had this to say about those who prayed for him:

“I work the rope lines a lot, and people say, ‘Mr. President, I pray for you and your family.’ I turn to them, I look them in the eye, and say, that’s the greatest gift you can give. That’s the greatest gift you can give. I mean it with all sincerity.”

God has given us the greatest gift of all…His beloved Son. The greatest gift we can give to someone is not found in a store. It’s right there in the storehouse of your heart…the gift of prayer. Give that gift. The one for whom you pray will be blessed and you will be reciprocated with thanksgiving as you remember another. Let’s pray!

Loving God; We have been so blessed by others, and our desire is to be a blessing in return. Gladly we bring the gift of prayer on their behalf and lay it before the Throne of Grace this day. Truly, this is the greatest gift we can give, and we praise you for that opportunity, in Jesus’ blessed Name. Amen!

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