My children, our love should not be just words and talk; it must be true love, which shows itself in action. (1 John 3:18 GNT)
Cats are peculiar critters. As I was unloading and packing groceries from my car this morning, I nearly stepped on a dead, disemboweled mouse right in my walking path. It was a “gift” from one of the cats we feed and care for who live on our property.
Those of you who own cats know that this is a pretty typical thing! I’m regularly encountering little presents like this. Some are good presents; getting rid of rodents and creepy crawlers is always a welcome offering. Others, not so much! Occasionally my kitties will nab a bird or a ground squirrel in their zealous guard duties, unfortunate casualties of the war on pest control.
We’re not so unlike these four-legged creatures, you know. When we enter into a true, healthy relationship with our Master, we seek to do things which please Him. Perhaps they are things we would have been doing anyway, like being generous, or using a talent, but our motivation changes to a godly one. Even those times when we get it wrong, our Master’s grace envelops us as He sees the pureness in heart. He may scold us over a wrong choice, but He will lovingly teach us how to conform to His image.
Cats are hunters by instinct; catching prey is their nature. However, instead of just doing whatever they wish with their conquests, my cats choose to lay out their trophies for me. They want ME to share in their accomplishments. They want to remind me that, although I haul those huge bags of cat food up the hill to keep their bellies full, they are grateful and wanting to reciprocate.
One aspect which sets Christianity apart from all others is that we are saved by grace. Many feel that it ends there, and excludes any opportunities for works. While it’s true that we cannot achieve salvation through our giving, that change of heart when we accept Jesus also motivates us to do good works. Or, at the very least, to do what we may have already been doing, but with a higher purpose! Our gratitude to our Lord spills over into wanting Him to be blessed as well.
You don’t have to perform great exploits today, or seek achievements beyond your reach. Just do what seems second nature to you, but with a holy motivation! Gatherer by instinct, giver by faithful love. Find something in your day which you can deposit on the walking path of your Master! He loves a cheerful giver!