Gift Suggestions

The Latest Word from John Ed Mathison
One of the busiest days in retail stores is the day after Christmas. It could be called the “Day of Exchanges.” Gifts received on Christmas did not fit, or were the wrong brand, or the wrong style, etc.

Wouldn’t it be nice to receive gifts that you don’t have to exchange the week after Christmas? Let me suggest some categories of people to whom you will probably be giving gifts, and some suggestions for gifts that won’t need to be exchanged the week after Christmas.

1. To employees – Give them a healthy, positive Christian environment where they will look forward to coming to work every day and they will have the sense that their place of work will be a platform for them to both receive and give the best gifts of life. Philippians 2:3-5 says, “Don’t be selfish; don’t live to make a good impression on others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourself. Don’t think only about your own affairs, but be interested in others, too, and what they are doing. Your attitude should be the same that Christ Jesus had.”

2. To customers and clients – There is an expectation that we should give a gift to customers and clients. Some people give the same gift to each person. The best gift you could give is second-mile service. Be willing to go the extra mile. Serve them beyond what they expect. Matthew 5:41 says, “And whoever shall force you to go one mile, go with him two.”

3. To friends – The best gift to friends is a genuine, authentic relationship that is built on truth and trust. Real friends are hard to find. Real friendship relations must be developed. Proverbs 18:24 says, “…there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.”

4. To enemies – The best gift is to give to your enemies is genuine, authentic forgiveness. Holding a grudge and trying to get back at somebody is detrimental both to the person holding the grudge and the person to whom the grudge is directed. The best resolution to sour relationships is to offer forgiveness. Matthew 6:14-15 says, “”If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.”

5. To family – The best gift to family members is a Godly example. The other gifts that we give to family members will be exchanged, or lost, or wear out, or rust, etc. A Godly example is what family members need most. Philippians 3:17-18 says, “Dear friends, pattern your lives after mine, and learn from those who follow our example.”

6. To God – The best gift you can give God is you. Sometimes we don’t even include Him on the gift list. After all, it is His birthday! Romans 12:1-2 (Message) says, “So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.”

These are just some suggestions for gifts that won’t need to be exchanged on the day after Christmas. These are gifts that keep on giving.

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