You know those people in your life who are ridiculously good at things? There are the friends who are super good at writing, the friends who are incredibly smart, the ones who have no problem making friends, the ones who can create anything given the right medium, (and yeah, the ones who are really really really ridiculously good looking).
Well, I have a friend who is awesome at giving. He is like the Picasso of gifts: Amazingly prolific and one of the greats. When I say he is a prolific giver, I truly mean it. I borrowed a movie of his (Jurassic Park) and not only did he drive 20 minutes to bring it to me, he also brought me a cable that would ensure a clearer picture on my TV and a sub-woofer that promised to rattle the martini glasses atop the shelf across the room ( for those of you who question his motives, be assured. I have discussed with him at length the three years he spent in a monastery as I prepare to set forth on my own adventure of understanding God’s will for my life–there is, shall we say, an understanding of fraternity between us). In this way he reminds me of the Lord. BUT he is a human, and as such utterly lacking on his own, save from God’s grace.
It says in the Bible “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 the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” And “He who did not spare his own son, but gave him up for us all, will he not also along with him graciously give us all things.”
God is the inventor of gifts. Just take a look around! Creation itself is a gift to all. And he doesn’t stop there! He has given us “every good and perfect thing.” He created us to receive his gifts, His love–which by the way is perfect and amazing and risky.
*time for a minor tangent*
He loved us so much that he not only gave up his only begotten son as a sacrifice for our dinginess, but so much so he couldn’t stand a sham. No, he values real love so much that he gave us the capacity for choice, risking our turning away. This is why he leaves the 99 and goes after the 1. Our authentic love was–and is–bought at a deadly price, and he will go to great lengths for our love. And what’s more, we don’t deserve this love, it’s a free gift of life, and love and eternity, and happiness, and warmth and goodness, when we deserve hell (and a few taxes too, I suppose).
Who can out give God? Whatever we give to him, he returns to us 100 fold.
And I want to give him everything. Or at least,I want to want to give him everything. I can be quite passionate about giving God my all, until he actually asks it of me.
‘Oh, so, like, giving you everything means actually waking up at 6 every morning to pray? It means, like, moving away from the comforts of my home…it means…putting my desires on the alter and, like…killing them…?’
I want to respond to God’s invitation with generosity, like my friend. When he asks to borrow the Jurassic Park DVD of my life, I want to say: “Yes, and oh also, here this cable and also, here’s this speaker, and, I’ll bring it to you so you don’t have to come to me.” I don’t want to just stop at enough–my (futile, meager, minuscule) attempt to out-give he who gives abundantly.
A closing thought….What do you think it would look like if we were able to give God one thing in a completely pure and perfect way? Or if we even tried…