Some time ago, I received a monetary blessing/gift from a parishioner.  I made a terrible mistake and refused to accept the gift.  I was young and felt that rejecting the gift was a way of showing humility or…?  It was foolish of me to do that and an older member of the church straightened me out.  I now know how it hurt the one who wanted to give me a gift that represented gratitude on their part for the ministry I had provided to them.  We reconciled and all was forgiven.  Since then I have often thought how it must hurt God when the gift of His Son is rejected.

Monday…Read John 1:4-5 and 10-11.  There is a lot of pathos in those brief verses.  To see the condition of the world and to realize that Jesus Christ is the answer to virtually every ill in the world…and yet, the world rejects the very One who has all the answers!

Tuesday…I can see a young girl in my mind’s eye.  She was about 13 years old when she began coming to a youth group I had at a church in Ohio.  When she was 16 she quit coming.  She had turned her back on the church and her church friends.  I saw her one day on a street corner, parked my car and got out to talk to her.  She was adamant that she wanted nothing more to do with Jesus or His church.  She began crying.  She sobbed and shook as she talked.  It was spiritual warfare.  I left her there and have prayed for her many times since.  Her rejection broke God’s heart, my heart and ultimately her own heart.  Luke 9:62

Wednesday…To accept the gift of Jesus is a serious matter.  Jesus warns us that there will be a cost.  Matthew 10:36 is a sobering verse containing a sobering truth.  Jesus has the right to command out loyalty and our love given the price He paid to erase our sin.  

Thursday…My dear wife has bought and sold real estate for years.  I marvel at her knowledge of that business.  In real estate, the “right of first refusal” is sometimes granted.  This means that one has the right to be offered a property first and may refuse that offer before anyone else or any other offer is considered.  We also have the right to refuse God’s gracious offer of forgiveness and eternal life.  It is incredible to me that most of the world does precisely that.  Luke 13:23ff

Friday…Most people have only a horizontal view of life.  That is, they do not see beyond the things of this world.  Other people have both a horizontal and a vertical view of life.  They see this life, but they also see the supernatural dimension of life…the life “up there.”  Those who see the supernatural, the life above and beyond this life, realize the incredible gift offered by the Creator as He gives His Son!  To reject Him, is to reject life itself.  Romans 8:10