“Now we have received, not the spirit of the world
but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the
things that are freely given to us of God.”
1 Corinthians 2:12 (KJV)
“Now we have received. . . “In order for us to receive anything we must be humble and accept that item from a benefactor, a birthday gift, an anniversary present, or a surprise given to us.
“. . . not the spirit of the world. . .” We are in this world, not of this world. When we belong to Jesus, our hearts become broken by the activities we see—robbery, child molestation, and murder. All we need to do is pick up a newspaper and scan the headlines to get a picture of the state of our world. This exercise would be a good place to begin to pray for others.
“. . . but the spirit which is of God. . .” When we gave our heart to Jesus, we received a bit of God’s spirit. He placed it in our hearts. When His spirit takes root in us, we notice that we feel differently about certain issues in our surroundings. God, through His Holy Spirit, guides us as we maneuver through our days. All the many things He does for us are gifts.
“. . . that we might know . . .” We can know with certainty that God has graciously entered into our hearts. People around us will know that we belong to Jesus.
“. . . the things . . . freely given to us of God.” God gives us many things just because He loves us. A few days before I composed these thoughts, a friend’s mother--a woman in her 80s-- told how she and her sister, when they were girls, would take a blanket out into their yard, spread it out and lay down and watch the sky. They would watch the clouds as they changed formation. As she spoke of this memory, I saw a glint in her eye and a smile across her face. Anyone who happened to listen could hear the calmness and love in her voice. God gave her a memory. This was one of her free gifts from God. Her sharing it with me was one of mine.
Have you received any gifts from God lately?
photo from 123rf.com/
* special note: When I searched for a photo, I looked for 'receiving hands' and then 'giving hands'. I found the same basic photos. When we pray we can hold our hands open before us and both give God our concerns and receive from Him what He has for us. Isn't that neat?
Freely, Freely you have received