Extravagant Gifts

Our college chaplain prayed the same prayer of thanksgiving every time the offering was presented in worship. It’s a version of 1 Chronicles 29:14b. He’d pray, “All good things come of thee, O Lord. We give thee but thine own.”

Our church joins many around the world in singing a similar sentiment each week: Praise God from whom all blessings flow. We sing that as we return to God a representative portion of the good, the blessings that have come our way by God’s grace.

The scripture readings for this Sunday look at the overflowing nature of God’s blessings. John 2:1-11 is a vivid reminder that God does blesses us prodigally, not parsimoniously. The quality and amount of wine Jesus gave to keep the wedding reception going was exceptional and vast. It would have held out for a month. His was an extravagant gift.

Similarly, God’s extravagant gifts are evident in his believers. 1 Corinthians 12:1-11 tells us the Spirit activates a variety of spiritual gifts within the members of the body of Christ. Because these are gifts of the Spirit, they are reasons to give thanks. As gifts, they are neither reasons to boast or reasons to demur. You didn’t enable your gifts, so both bragging as though you did or hiding them as if they don’t exist are inappropriate responses. It is your calling to give to God from the gifts God has given to you. It is God’s desire that that be done for the common good.