Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Gifts Which Will Last Forever (Literally)

"Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness."   ---Romans 12:6-8


2020. What a ridiculous ride, right? Sheesh.

Oh, the shaking. The exposing. The spotlight-revealing of our personal strengths and the places we still flounder.

Mostly? Ol' Debra felt intrigued, inspired and challenged by 2020. Fascinated, and certainly never bored. 

Even in darker times, always I felt God's comforting presence, but you know? Not always did it arrive the same way. Often God used the gifts He'd placed inside people to remind me, "Calm your heart. Everything is gonna be alright." 

No man is an island unto himself, you know. We need each other.

Those afternoons, evenings, when local government leaders treated us like children (and I felt like slapping them)? I'd sit here and watch 1970's music videos with the Bee Gee's, Carpenters, Chicago, Bread and more--and feel fine. Contented. All smiley like Stevie Wonder at his piano. ツ

But you know how lots of those artists left us decades ago? Their music gifts remained behind. 

In a wild 2020, they're still working their purposes. They soothe, balance and quiet my heart and remind me of what's --

--true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of a good report, of virtue and praise--things to think upon.  (from Philippians 4).

I appreciate anyone who reminds me of those.

Remember the original Nancy Drew and Judy Bolton books I collected? Authors penned them back in the 1930's and 40's, but in our wild Today's world, they help keep my personal horizon from tilting.

Upstairs here I live in such good company of myriad of my author 'friends' who fulfilled their callings. Their gifts keep me balanced in a 2020 unbalanced world, keep my homemaking, writing and encouragement gifts feeling fresh and anticipatory even after 40 years.

Similarly, the actors who lived in earlier eras than mine still inspire and delight me through their films. They're now absent, but not their gifts. Nope, still here in vitality upon the screen. Still bringing cheer.

And also via that world called Youtube? 

Preachers, teachers, preppers and pundits, some gone, many remaining, but all with God-given gifts which--because of obedience--will stand and bless and be rewarded forever.

In a confused world like ours, all gifts matter because all people matter to Jesus--

'words fitly spoken'
teaching, etc.

 Through His gifts, He makes Himself known as the creative, helping, healing, concerned, understanding God that He is.

May we train our eyes to behold Him through the gifts He bestows and never hold back when He desires to show Himself strong through us.

May we give lavishly and always remember someone might not last the night without a glimpse through us of the incredible, life-saving God we serve.

Essential! Each of us is extremely essential to one another.

"Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good."  ---from 1 Corinthians 12

Which gifts will you leave behind?


A very special thanks to these folks at Youtube who God used in 2020 to sustain my joie de vivre (shall we say). Just a small sampling, Folks--

And speaking of actors,  here's the TCM Remembers for 2020! Bittersweet and lovely as always.


Oh! Now here's some good news and even follows well the theme of my post--

For some lovely Christmas carols by the top soloists of the 1950's and 60's, go here.


Merry Christmas to all my special readers!


"For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15


Sandi said...

I think you would also like Eric Metaxas and Mike Thompson. They are both on YouTube.

Merry Christmas! 🎄

Debra said...

Thanks, Sandi, and you're right! I do really like them both and have appreciated them over the past year. My list here was getting so long--seriously, it could've been three times longer! :) Thanks for reading and commenting here and merry Christmas to you! Blessings, Debra

Betsy said...

We watch Somers in Alaska and Homestead Tessie too! I can't remember the last time I wstched "real" TV. YouTube is much better and always ready to lift my spirits with the show of my choice.
Thank you for your words today. They are such a great reminder to me.
Wishing you and Tom a wonderful and peace-filled Christmas Debra.
Blessings and love,

Debra said...

Betsy--so happy you also watch Tessie and the Somers! Seriously, they've helped make my 2020 better and sweeter and they've inspired me to keep on keeping on in joy. Thanks so much for reading here so faithfully this year again and may you have a very warm and cozy Christmas, my friend! Blessings, Debra

Debi @ Tuesdays Child said...

I'm just now reading this post and since it's Christmas morning, I'll keep it brief for now and wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy & Healthy New Year (which hopefully at least half of the year to be Corona-free!)

Debra said...

Thanks so much, Debi! I've appreciated your comments so much this year and merry Christmas to you! Wishing you a bright new year as well. Thanks again! Blessings, Debra