Summary: A sermon that suggests that we need to avail ourselves of all Jesus has given us to live a successful Christian life

Forget Finding Jesus

among our Unwrapped gifts.

And Romans 6- 23 says For the wages of sin are death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

In the movie finding Nemo we witness an incredible animated movie about a lost fish lured away to the dangerous mysteries of the open sea. He failed to see that the coral reef that he lived on was a gift and much was still to be learned there. Many people are losing Jesus because they have failed to unwrap all the gifts that God has given them and are lured away. Or sometimes like an overwhelmed child at a birthday party they tear off the paper glance at the gift and move on to the next glittery parcel.

Romans 6- 23 says For the wages of sin are death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

The gifts won’t go away for as we read in romans 11 verse 29 King James Bible For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

This morning I would like to encourage you to find Jesus again as you unwrap the gifts that he has given to you.

On a certain day in the twentieth century a man landed on the moon – He put his feet into the lunar dust and declared that it was a giant step for mankind. Plans are afoot to put a colony into space somewhere and that too would be a giant step for mankind.

Joshua one day in a century long before Jesus put his foot onto the dry riverbed of the river Jordan. As Joshua unwrapped the promises of God in the coming conquest season the gift that was bestowed on the people of Israel emerged and it became the greatest nation on earth bar none as long as they remained faithful to God.

As the red sea had parted for Moses – so the Jordan had parted for Joshua and a nation followed him into the land that God had promised much earlier to Abraham and his descendants.

This was the moment when promises were realised and when dreams began to become reality.

Did you ever look at the bottom of the Christmas tree as a child and look at the wrapping paper around the gifts and wonder what was in it for you? Did you ever on your birthday open up the presents and realise that your wildest dreams were surpassed? Did you ever, as the paper was rolled up and the presents were all out for everyone to see suddenly discover one more present and realise when you opened it that it was the best present of all?

As a Christian God has promised you great things and one of the things I would like to encourage you is that he has many great unwrapped gifts for you. When you unwrap these gifts you find Jesus who often gets lost in the polluted oceans of this world

Recently I received a facebook message from a friend in response to a post I had put on earlier.

Here is what my friend said. Hey John. I'm puffing the end of a cigar (and always uncertain why anyone would do such a thing) with a coffee at midnight on the terrace of a rather grand house in the south western Spanish highlands. I'm disproportionately blessed to be here with a group of 8 extraordinary writers none of whom follow Christ but all of whom have tremendous hearts. And all the while I have been here (4 days) in my heart I hear the song from 40 years ago singing "it's no longer I that liveth but Christ that liveth in me. HE LIVES, HE LIVES, JESUS IS ALIVE IN ME." And I recognize how poorly I have represented him through my life. This place is full of the way of the world and religion and superstition and new age offerings charming people away from him. And I realize that I must do much more to represent him to those who are lost.

And I recall you and your stoic passion for Christ and your bad taste in clothing and it helps me to press on.

Unwrapped presents.

If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

Matthew chapter 7 verse 11

Romans chapter 11 verse 29 For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

Do you remember what you got last birthday?

Many of us won’t

If you do remember – are you still using it?

Do you remember what God gave you when you were saved?

Many of us don’t but my guess is that many of us neglect the most important gifts that God has given us to unwrap and use and my feeling is if we remind ourselves of the most important gifts we have received and begin to dust them off and rediscover them our lives would go a lot better.

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