Our scripture this morning is 1 John 3:16-23.

‘This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth. This is how we know that we belong to the truth and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence: If our hearts condemn us, we know that God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him. And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. ‘

John reminds us of Christ’s love and sacrifice for us, and that this is the example for our lives as well. Our gifts from God are to be used for the good of others, not to be kept selfishly for our use alone. We are taught that we must “not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth” (v. 18).

We are called to be aware of what we have to give back to His children and to use our gifts wisely, for the benefit of all. God has provided us with talents and resources to use in the service of His kingdom. It is our choice to use our gifts properly, obeying the commandment to love one another.

Ask yourself what you are blessed with and how that gift can bless others. It may seem simple and unremarkable to you, but someone somewhere needs what you have to offer the world. God is counting on us to make good decisions regarding His gifts, that all His children may be cared for in His love.

Gracious God, You have given us wonderful skills and materials. Help us to share Your love through these gifts that the world may be a better place for all Your people. Amen.

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