It’s a few days after Christmas, and the weather app on my phone showed -2 degrees when I woke up this morning. Yikes! Needless to say I am happy to be working from home today, curled up under a blanket, my second cup of peppermint tea next to me and my laptop, appropriately on my lap.
For the last couple of hours I have worked through my inbox, catching up on emails that have come in from our Global Partners around the world. I have read the stories of struggling families in Eastern Europe and a church reaching out to them in word and deed, of the wonder and excitement of people in Asia who heard the name Jesus for the very first time this Christmas, of families living far from their country of origin–sacrificing the comforts of home and of the season, of a local man in a far away country living on 1/4 of what his family needs but trusting that since God called him to preach, God will also provide, and of many willing to risk comfort in this life so that others could have the chance of one eternal.
Warm and cozy, with the small mountain of opened presents displayed under my Christmas tree in sight, its an inspiring, but also humbling and challenging read. It would be easy to go down the path of guilt, and feel ashamed for all the blessings of family, food, and gifts that I have enjoyed these past few days. But just as we delight in giving gifts to others, I believe God delights in giving gifts to us, and we are to receive them with joy and thankfulness.
However, I am reminded of God’s promise to Abraham. He promised to bless Abraham with many descendants, not just for Abraham’s sake, but so that all the nations of the world would be blessed. (Genesis 22:17-18). Abraham was blessed so that he could be a blessing. The reports I read today are a reminder that the same applies to me. They hold me accountable to the fact that the most important thing in life is a saving relationship with Jesus Christ, and that in following Him I am called to share the Gospel in all things. I am to constantly view what I have, where I live, and the work I do through that lens.
With the New Year approaching I am going pray over the next few days that God would show me each day this year how I am to use what He has blessed me with, to bless others, and that I would have the same faith, courage, compassion, and willingness to sacrifice that I have read about today. Would you join me in this prayer? May 2018 be a year where many receive the greatest blessing of all!