‘Tis the Season…For Giving!

By on December 1, 2011   /   Leave a comment

Giving appropriate gifts is a wonderful, tangible expression of generosity, love, and the desire to bless others. Proverbs 18:16 says, “Giving a gift can open doors; it gives access to important people!” (NLT) Any time is a right time to send a gift, especially when the Lord gives us a nudge. But it is especially timely at Christmas…’tis the season for giving!

Each year, I ask the Lord for guidance about Christmas gifts for my friends who support my ministry. I watch for appropriate items that my mission organization sells and select different gifts each year. I often put together a gift bag representing my year of ministry with a note enclosed describing each item’s significance. I look for things that will remind my friends of their partnership with me and also will be a spiritual blessing to them, such as books or CD’s. Small, colorful local gifts that impart the flavor of the culture I’ve worked in that year help my supporters feel a part of my ministry experience. This year, I’m making plaques of commendation, honoring those who have supported me in missions work for many years. Each one will be personalized and relatively easy to make, using calligraphy type styles with computer software. I trust that they will be meaningful keepsakes for each of my dear friends who have co-labored with me through thick and thin.

In writing this article, I wanted a fresh perspective from a long-time missions supporter and was able to interview a dear friend. Along with her husband, she has helped various missionaries and mission projects over the years. Her comments deeply reinforced my belief that gifts from missionary workers to their ministry partners have great significance. When I asked about what she had received from those she supported, the first thing she mentioned as a “gift” was in relation to letters from those in ministry. She said they affirmed her in knowing she is part of their ministry. Regarding tangible gifts, she expressed surprise: “I’m truly amazed to get them. I don’t expect them. It makes me feel appreciated…you know there has been a real effort, thoughtfulness, and sacrifice. We all like to be affirmed, especially when you have a dull job at home, and you realize that you’re still impacting the Kingdom.” She then pointed to a beautiful burgundy Indian tapestry on her living room wall, “Last summer I saw a couple we’ve supported for years in their missions work in India. Out of necessity, I was considering tightening my belt, cutting back my support to them, but it touched my heart that they were so loving. That wall hanging they gave me was their way of honoring me, which I didn’t expect. You know you’re not just a check they’ve received in the mail – there’s a relationship that means so much. And now, every time I look at that tapestry, it reminds me to pray for them.” (And no, she did not cut back her support!)

Her comments reminded me that as we encourage and strengthen one another, whether we are “senders” or those who are “sent,” we’re linking arms together in God’s work. Our relationships with those involved with our ministry is through our fellowship with them, our letters to them, and our gifts to them. Gifts touch lives – they impact and impress us in many ways, and as my friend said, they affirm us. They encourage us to keep on doing good, to be generous and active in our part of God’s Kingdom expanding on this earth. May we become great gift givers, especially in this Christmas season!


Latest SRS Blog Post

Support Raising Solutions
PO BOX 3556
Fayetteville, AR, 72702
1(800) 595-4881