Advent Thursday 22nd December Acts 20:35

It is blessed to give than receive                                          Acts 20:15

 In this passage, Paul is writing to the elders to the church in Ephesus. He writes a letter sent by a courier, as he wanted to arrive in Jerusalem and could not spare any time stopping off in Ephesus. Yet there were things he felt he needed to say to them.

It seems that he knew he would not see them again (v25), so his task was to prepare them to keep the faith that he had previously proclaimed to them. Paul even sensed that betrayal could be present within the Elders, so instructs them to be alert and never forgo the faith of Christ, that he had taught them, to remember the life Jesus lived, and so by living the life of disciples we must support the weak. His emphasis on giving rather than receiving comes directly from his own experience. As the transformed Paul, he has experienced what it feels like to be accepted and loved and offered hospitality, ‘to give rather than receive’.

These words are not just for Advent but for all time, for it is only when we arrive at the stable, we are humbled at God’s gift to us in Jesus.

Seeking God,

You looked for a way to reach humankind,

to show us what it really means to accepted and loved

And so You gave of your very self,

and came to dwell here with us,

as a humble fragile infant.

As your soft hands reached out from your crib to touch the shepherds, the warmth of gift to us softened hearts, and still does today Amen    

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