Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

A Great Gift

Ephesians 2:8

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God

So – what are you getting me for Christmas – LOL? What great gift have you picked out for me? Ask me and I will give you some great ideas.

So what are you getting your children? What are you getting your spouse or special someone? What is on your wish list? Have you shared your wish list with anyone?

I saw on Amazon that vintage Hot Wheels are making a comeback. LEGOs are still a hot item. Robots seem to be selling well. Other electronics like pads for children – the latest cell phone or pad – and virtual viewers are selling well. Clothes are always a welcome gift. Cash or gift cards are always in style (although some call them lazy gifts – I love them).

I ordered myself a couple of pair of shoes (I wear a pair of all black tennis shoes instead of dress shoes because of an arch issue) and a golf shirt for anyone in the family that wishes to get me something (you know how hard it is to buy for dad). I also just – Monday night – ordered a Challenge Coin holder for my desk at work (I have been honored with a number of them and I have purchased a few as well). These will be great gifts that others will give me or I will give myself (LOL).

Has anyone finished their Christmas shopping yet? I saw something funny – yet true today on Facebook. Someone said – I love it on Christmas Day when a label on a present says “From mom and dad” and you just know that dad has absolutely no idea what’s inside.

What was your most favorite Christmas present in the last ten years? What about in your lifetime? As I’ve gotten older – the best present for me is having my children and grandchildren around me at Christmas (and throughout the year). For a number of years one daughter and family was in California and one was in New Jersey – now all three are in Anne Arundel County and seemingly for the foreseeable future. I’m just so tickled by that gift!

Today’s passage talks about a great gift – our salvation. Here is today’s passage in partial context. Ephesians 2:1–10 – 1 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Give someone the great gift of Jesus this Christmas! Tell somebody how important Jesus is to you and in your life! Give your children and your grandchildren the Bible – even go hi-tech if you need to and give it to them electronically or make sure their pad or cell phone has a Bible app on it. Witness to your family and all who will listen about your faith.

We can spend hundreds and even thousands of dollars on material things and it will not have the lasting impact that a relationship with Jesus will have on them. Ya gotta tell somebody about Jesus! Merry Christmas!

Just something for us to think about today as we go on our way!

P.S. Remember what I always say about Christmas – don’t go into debt for Christmas!

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December 12, 2017 - Posted by | Advent Thought, Build, Christmas, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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