September 30, 2022
“For the Mighty One has done great things for me and holy is His name.” (Luke 1:49)
Every characteristic of God is not only great because of its uniqueness but because of its breadth. He not only contains a love that nothing in heaven and earth possesses, for instance, but He also has it fully, in complete measure. God IS love, John proclaimed. What we know of real love and what we see shadowed on this earth comes from one Source. God's attributes are perfect, which is why He is called “holy.” He is different in His attributes and His completeness.
THE PERFECT GIVER
God gives. It is His nature, and He can do no other. “Every good and perfect gift comes from above,” James 1 declares. The Psalmist realized that “He gives to His beloved even in his sleep” (Psalm 127). The Scripture is nothing less than a constant display of His generosity.
When Mary realized what God had done for her, she prayed the great prayer recorded in Luke, Chapter 1. One simple line sums up the generosity of God.
GOD’S GIVING COMES FROM AN INEXHAUSTIBLE SOURCE
“For the MIGHTY ONE.”
God has no limits to His ability to give. Nothing is impossible with Him. He can grant a child to a barren Sarah in her 90s. He can send His Son to indwell a young virgin as a one-cell organism. This is the One who is ALL-mighty. His storehouse is complete. His bank is limitless. There is nothing He cannot give when He chooses to display His generosity.
IT HAPPENS AT HIS IMPECCABLE DISCRETION
“For the Mighty One HAS DONE”
Mary did not ask for this immaculate conception. She was chosen by God to bear Christ. None of us deserve His gifts. But He bestows good and perfect things to us with flawless wisdom and purpose. He withholds things that we want that might hurt us at times. He gives what we don’t realize we need at times. He does this at His own initiation and keeps doing it till death and beyond. It is His Divine choice and activity to give.
HE GIVES THE BEST
“For the Mighty One has done GREAT THINGS”
To receive a gift from one you consider the greatest on earth would be invaluable to you. But these gifts are great, for they come from God. The gift of life, breath, salvation, and eternity are from our King and glorious in their origin.
But they are also great because they are perfect in timing and purpose. The Lord knows what is needed for you. He gives His children what they need. He knows your needs before you even ask and has made abundant provision.
And His gifts are great because they are abundant. He can do “exceedingly, abundantly beyond what we ask or think.”
If you pause and pause often, you will realize He has done great things for you.
IT IS PERSONAL
“For the Mighty One has done great things FOR US.”
It’s nice to see a gift bestowed on someone else but overwhelming to be the recipient yourself. What He does, He does for us. He loves His children and has “gladly chosen to give us the Kingdom.” We are made “heirs and joint-heirs with Christ.” You may have never realized it, but God is looking at you (His creation) and giving to you beyond measure. If you humbly cooperate with Him, you will see this and put yourself in a position to receive even more. His gives His greatest measure to those who have proved they will steward them well.
We should sing with Mary. Hers was a unique gift. But what God has given us and the promise of His everlasting generosity should cause us to live with joy. No whining, complaining, or discontent. There should be no silence with us; no unsung son. We should live a life of gratitude and praise. And it should begin right now.
Father, You are our Source of all we have and will ever have. Open our eyes to Your priceless generosity. Deliver us from a petty view that vainly believes it is from our hands or by our ingenuity. Make us grateful unceasingly. “In everything give thanks,” You said, and there is a reason. Lift us from our limited understanding, and let us grasp your goodness and incessant generosity toward us. And make us like You, Father. Conform us to the image of Your Son who left it all to give to us. Deliver us from a miserly spirit. Help us give with reckless love and get Your gifts into circulation to bless You and others, and in so doing, bless us.
March 29, 2023
As a pastor for the last 55 years, I have had the joy of being encouraged and blessed and prayed for by so many people. It is what carries you in your task of shepherding people. As I look back over five decades of ministry, their love has dramatically enriched my life.
But also, a pastor leads. And when anyone leads, there are almost always some who disagree.
March 28, 2023
March 27, 2023