Counting 1000 gifts this year beginning January 1st 2016. I have been a little down since Christmas has been over but I am starting to see the New Year coming and I am looking forward to it! I wanted to mention 3 gifts of the Holy Spirit that I received Christmas Day and then a few days after. The first gift was dinner at Mc Donald’s for free! On Christmas Day my husband and daughter went to Mc Donalds for food cause I woke up sick that day. Anyway, they left me home watching The Nativity towards the end of the movie and I was already feeling Jesus but they came in and said, ” Your not gonna believe what happened!” I said,”What?” They said, ” A lady paid for our food!” I said,” How?” with tears welling up in my eyes cause I knew I was getting ready to witness a miracle. They said that they let her go ahead of them in the drive thru line and when they got to the cashier to pay they were told that the lady in front of them paid the bill! That was thirty dollars we saved! Another gift is I think God has healed my stomach. I get stomach aches every time I eat and spend every night with severe stomach pains. I had been feeling a fluttering in my stomach for about 3 days and now for 3 days no stomach aches at all! That has been a tremendous relief! The next thing was on Christmas Eve we go to family’s house and exchange gifts only this year I ended up with a scarf. It was because the earrings I got won’t work for my ear and a sweater I got was too big. I was okay with it because I have Jesus and that’s all that matters but something interesting happened. The day before yesterday I was drying dishes and I thought, all they had to get me would have been some towels and I would have been happy! Then my husband came home from his mom’s house and said his mom had been thinking that I didn’t really get enough for Christmas and wants to take me where ever I want to go to buy some towels! I knew in every one of these instances that the Holy Spirit was making Himself known.
I figured after Christmas this was why I was a little sad, I was full of experiences with God during Christmas and then boom I wasn’t experiencing anything. It made me sad. But I remembered Ann Voskamp’s 1000 gifts which I have tried before and quit several times. I quit because I found it hard to be thankful for the mundane things such as a cat laying in a chair but God has revealed something to me about this. If you truly are following Christ in every moment then your in God’s Will and everything you are experiencing is actually a gift from God. Now I know you might disagree because some things don’t look like gifts, they look like thorns. But I read in Ann’s The Greatest Gift that you don’t have a trial that doesn’t have a gift. I listened to Steve Furtick recently and he was preaching about Paul’s thorn. THORN stands for: Temptation, Hardship, Opposition, Rejection, Need. He goes on to say the “thorn” is from Satan but the message is from God. He said to ask yourself, could I be getting a gift from God wrapped in the package of the enemy right now in my life? The thorns Jesus wore brought pain but also brought God glory! So, what I am trying to say is, if we look closely and pay attention, God is giving us gifts continuously. The title to this post is a scripture from the Bible John 3:27. I have meditated on this scripture and had the revelation that this Earth is God’s. We are IN HIS creation. He is overlooking us like we would an ant farm. He GIVES us EVERYTHING we need to live. He MAINTAINS everything we need to live. When your in His plan for your life, He is in CONTROL. So, suddenly I see everything around me as a gift directly from Him. I finally get how you can experience God in little things that may seem mundane to us, but it’s actually a gift from Him. How many times a day we fail to thank God for the little things because we don’t see them as coming from heaven. We take so much for granted. So much could be taken away and we don’t even give it a thought.
I want Christmas to keep going, not to end. I am thankful for my Holy Spirit gifts and pray to experience at least 3 every day this coming year. The way I have figured out how to do this is with this scripture, to be mindful that whatever I receive, any joy I feel is ultimately from heaven. And when something hard happens I will be looking for the gift cause I know God has a message for me in the hard moments. He is always growing us in the hard times. If you are reading this and don’t believe what I’m saying, it’s because you CHOOSE a different reality than me. My reality is with God, I choose to take His perspective on my life and therefore, I experience HIM. John 14:21, The person who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who[really] loves Me; and whoever [really] loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and reveal Myself to him [I will make Myself real to him].”
Follow Jesus and what He says for real and you experience Him for real.
I also enjoyed giving gifts this year to neighbors and family and plan to figure out ways to give to others at least three times a day. I felt God in giving to others. I remember in the movie Pay It Forward it was said that if your giving doesn’t give relief then it isn’t really giving. I pray to give some people some relief this year. 2 Thessalonians 2:17, comfort and encourage and strengthen your hearts [keeping them steadfast and on course] in every good work and word. Just as Jesus did, Acts 10:38, how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with great power; and He went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, because God was with Him. We are anointed to bless like Jesus did.