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Summary: This is a lesson for the last week of November, on planned giving for Christmas

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Planned on PURPOSE, last week of November

By Wade Martin Hughes, Sr.

Kyfingers@aol.com

TEXT:

2 Cor. 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

Matthew 26:15 And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they convenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver.

Luke 6:38 Give and it shall be given unto you; good measure pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. FOR WITH THE SAME MEASURE THAT YOU MEASURE, IT SHALL BE MEASURED UNTO YOU

Galatians 6:7-10 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. [8] For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. [9] And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. [10] Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.

Mat. 26:15 Judas said, What will you give me? They covenanted...

Is the question what will you give me? or --- What can I give?

Today as I ponder I must honor a vow I made to God about 25 years ago.

Please read this.

Many years ago, before Linda and I had children, we were at my Mom and Dad’s house. As was the norm, we were all gathered around the Christmas tree in the parsonage in Frankfort.

We gathered around the tree. Nina and Linda were passing the gifts out to each one. Dad, in his Archie Bunker chair, I, in the floor at their bedroom door, we were blessed ... there were many gifts for each individual, the wrapping paper was flying every where, and I started crying in my heart.

Linda and I had purchased gifts and received gifts from every one, but I realized a ...

1) PAINFUL TRUTH, ...

THERE WAS NOT ONE GIFT UNDER THE TREE FOR JESUS, --- FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD THAT HE GAVE ... THE BABY CHILD WE ADORED, THE SAVIOR THAT GAVE HIS LIFE... THE HOLY SPIRIT--- THE GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVING, AND I HAD FAILED, THERE WAS NOT ONE GIFT FOR THE BIRTHDAY OF MY MASTER AND LORD, NOT ONE.

At this time, I was not a pastor nor even acknowledged the call of God on my life, I was a school teacher and a musician.

Later, when things settled down, I went to the basement, and watched the fire burning in the stove and cried--- HOW COULD I HAVE FORGOTTEN?

I loved Jesus and served Him many years, but I thought I should receive; and I forgot IT WAS JESUS’ BIRTHDAY, not mine.

2) I made a promise that day, if I had the chance to teach, preach, or tell any one --- that I would remind every body the last week of November to prepare and purpose a gift for Jesus on His birthday.

I promised to have a planned, purposed gift at the foot of the Christmas tree and that I would ask others to plan a special birthday gift for Jesus, as they considered their own personal family and friends.

3) So I write today, to ask you to think and make plans to give Jesus a present.

The next year I promised to win 5 souls in December. I had a jail ministry, I worked very hard all month. On the 25th, as the gifts were unwrapped, I was warmed to present the present of 6 souls I had lead to the cross.

One year, I promised to read the whole Bible in December, I started Genesis on Dec. 1; I finished Revelations on Dec. 31.

I cleaned the church’s rest rooms top to bottom one year.

I have given special offerings to missions in December, when the Lord blessed.

I have visited the rest homes 25 times in December.

What ever gift I presented to the cross on the 25th, was because I planned and purposed.

Love must learn to give beyond generous impulses, generosity should be a matter of discretion and planning, not just grudgingly or, OF NECESSITY --- BUT ACCORDING AS HE PURPOSED. (2 Cor. 9:7)

While you go Christmas shopping, think of and plan a GIFT for Jesus!

4) HELP A CHILD TO PLAN A BIRTHDAY PRESENT. STEER YOUR FAMILY TO A DISCUSSION AND PLAN ON GIVING!

I know many I write to have limited incomes, good presents for Jesus birthday don’t have to cost money.

Let a child draw with much effort and give it to an old person.

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