A Used Gift
How would you feel if you were given a used gift for your birthday? Many of us would feel hurt by it. Some of us may even feel like we aren’t deeply loved or appreciated if the person doesn’t care enough to buy us an unused gift. Yet, God calls us to give used gifts every day.
For instance, we are told to encourage each other daily. (Hebrews 3:13) The more we encourage others, the easier it becomes. Thus, it becomes a ‘used’ gift because we are using it frequently. For the frustrated cashier who may be overworked and underpaid, we can encourage her by simply saying, “I appreciate your help. Thank you so much.” Little words like that can go a long way! With our words, we can give her a wonderful gift that may carry her through the rest of her day.
There are several more gifts we can give to others. (Romans 12:7-8) We can serve others. This can take many different forms, but most of the time it will be through serving those in our own household. Yet, there are times when we need to serve those outside of our home.
Some of us can give the gift of teaching. This can be done through teaching a class at church or even teaching young women how to do practical things in their homes like cleaning, planning a menu, or even finding the best value for their money. Whether we like it or not, we most often teach in our own homes by the example we set.
Giving is another way we can bless someone. For the person who is really struggling financially, we may have the ability to give them some money. Sometimes our giving may be in the form of babysitting for a friend so that she can run some errands or so that she can have some uninterrupted quiet time. Another way to give could be through lending a listening ear to someone. A treasured gift that we can give to our children is quality time.
Another gift we can give is through our leadership in the home while our husband is at work. When we allow him to have confidence in us, it gives him peace of mind. He knows that he can leave the house and not have to worry all day about what is taking place while he is gone. We give our husband a wonderful gift by being a godly influence on our children. When we work to keep our home running smoothly, we bless our husband immeasurably.
We live in a world that lacks in showing mercy, yet there are numerous people dying for someone to grant them some mercy. What about the mother who feels like she is failing miserably? If we let her know that we have struggled with the same issues she is facing, we give her hope that she isn’t alone. We also give her the hope that things will get better.
Paul tells us to stir up the gifts that God has bestowed upon us. (Second Timothy 1:6) Unlike many gifts that will wear out over time, these gifts will never wear out or break. They will actually get better the more they are put to use!
What used gifts do you have to offer someone today?
© 2005, Stacy R. Miller