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Karin Wieland

“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask Him.” Matthew 7:11 NIV

I love shopping and find particular enjoyment when shopping for gifts. I enjoy finding the perfect gift for that very special someone. Recently I went shopping for my daughter’s fourth birthday. I spent almost an hour walking up and down the aisles. I would take down toys I thought she might like and put them into my cart, then compare prices and contemplate the present she would like the most. She had asked for another baby doll, but I wasn’t so sure. She rarely plays with the ones she has now. She asked for a truck simply because her brothers have one, not that she would even open the box. I was near exhaustion when I saw it–the perfect gift for my sweet baby girl. It was a kid’s karaoke machine that allowed children to view themselves on the television as they sing. She is such a performer and I knew she would love it.

When her birthday arrived, she could have cared less about the box with microphones. I was hurt at first, but then realized she had no idea what a karaoke machine was. We opened the box, I hooked it up and showed her how the karaoke machine worked. Now I can’t get her to stop singing and dancing.

I think this is a lot like how our Father in heaven gives us gifts and blessings on earth. He thinks about me and what would be perfect for me. He takes time to pick out that perfect item, no matter the cost. Even  though I may have asked for something else, completely different, He has seen all the toys in the store and knows what is inside each box. He enjoys giving us those handmade gifts that He created just for us.

Often we get impatient waiting for God to give us the blessings for which we’ve asked. Just like my kids can’t wait to open their presents on Christmas morning, I can’t wait either to see their faces–their joy when they receive exactly what they wanted and then some. I think God gets excited too. He can’t wait to see our joy when we receive that perfect gift or answer to prayer at just the right time.

There are times when my children inevitably find the box a better gift than what’s inside. One year when I was a child, my mother was completely mortified when I announced to the entire family how ugly a sweater was that I’d been given as a birthday present. My aunt had made it and she was crushed. I am sure God’s heart breaks when we are disappointed and ungrateful for the gifts He has chosen for us.

What has God blessed you with? I prayed for children, begging God to make me a mom. He has given me three of the most beautiful children I can imagine. But often I find myself in the midst of complaining about the daily challenges of raising children. Later, when they are asleep and cannot break anything or color on the walls or tell me ‘no’ for the umpteenth time, I realize what precious gifts they are from God. He made them with His own hands just for me to raise and I need to be thankful for them even when they are not perfect.

I want God to know everyday how thankful I am for all the gifts and blessings He has given me. I do not want to put His blessings on a shelf never to be enjoyed. Or, be caught complaining that I like the blessings given to others better than my own. Every blessing, large or small was hand picked by God for each of us.

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