For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Most of us remember this verse from when we were young children. Many of you probably memorized it in church, or in school if you attended a Christian school like I did. Even though it is the verse in the Bible that I am most familiar, recently I was prompted to look at it from a different perspective.
My wife, Tonya, and I celebrated our anniversary on June 7th. Money has often been tight for us so we sometimes aren’t able to go away or get each other nice gifts like we usually try to do. Despite this, I remember one year that Tonya gave me the best possible gift that I can imagine. She gave me a scrapbook, which contains many wonderful memories that she put together with pictures from our time together, quotes about love and marriage, and her own feelings about me and our relationship.
When I looked at the scrapbook I was overwhelmed. It was amazing to look at all of the things we have done together and the feelings we have for each other, which are evident in the pictures and words she wrote. I didn’t feel worthy of all of the kind words she said about me, never mind the many hours it took her to complete the scrapbook. It was a perfect gift because it was her expression of her love for me.
This humbling gift brought my thoughts to another gift that I don’t feel worthy to receive. The gift the Lord has given us. John 3:16 tells us that the Lord gave His only Son so that we might have eternal life. The thought of this is amazing. If Tony’s gift made me feel unworthy, how much should the Lord’s gift make me feel this way? Yet I often allow myself to take the gift of Jesus Christ for granted. I lose focus of what is important. I begin to drift from the Lord. At these times I need to remind myself of John 3:16.
Just as I would never want to take Tonya’s love for granted, I never want to allow myself to forget what an amazing gift the Lord has given me by allowing His only son to be sacrificed so that I could have eternal life.