Giving is Living

By Pastor Mark McAdow
I challenged us two weeks ago to truly give this Christmas season by giving to someone who can’t give back to you. When we give to those who we know and love, it is a blessing, but what a greater blessing it is to give to those who can’t give in return.  After all, giving to your peers is really not “giving” as much as it is “gift exchanging.”  

Why do we give gifts at Christmas at all? It’s not our birthday!

We give gifts because God first gave to us. “For God so loved the world that He gave his only son that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” You know the reference by heart. “We love because He first loved us.” - 1 John 4:19.

I have had such great fun this week giving to friends and strangers. I’ve watched eyes light up on the faces of my friends at the Recycling Center, a smile come across the face of a man working  in my home after I gave him some money for a Lennox hamburger, A Salvation Army bell ringer wasn’t having a good day, so I stopped and offered to pray for him. He quit ringing bells and took his cap off as I prayed. I made a call to a homebound member to cheer her up, and I asked our church mail carrier her name and how to spell it at McDonald’s this morning so we could bless her.

Another Willow View member bought hot chocolate for a dozen children at a school program! I did insignificant things, but I was the one who was blessed the most.  Jesus said, “It is more blessed to give than receive.”  I must admit I don’t always feel that way, but I do believe God’s Word is true. I ‘ve been experiencing it this week!  Wouldn’t it be nice if we could experience that same Christmas spirit all year long? Christmas spirit lasts only a few days or weeks, but God gave us His Holy Spirit to last forever.

I pray you’re experiencing the blessing of giving to others – if only a smile, a kind word, a heartfelt hug or an invitation to worship this Sunday on Christmas Eve. You may be the very person the Lord wants to use to reach another for Christ this Christmas! Christmas is really only about Jesus.

Looking forward to sharing this Sunday morning and evening with you on Christmas Eve as we worship the Newborn King. Morning worship is at 9 and 11 a.m., and we have one Christmas Eve candlelight service at 6 p.m.  O Come all ye faithful!

Yours in His love,
Pastor Mark

PS: Thank you for the kind and generous Christmas bonuses you gave to our staff this week. We feel very blessed by our wonderful Willow View family.

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