Recently, after rushing around getting the two young men in my care at Christian Horizons off to school, I had to leave in a hurry to meet some other staffers for a Commissioning Service in nearby Cobourg, ON. In all the hustle and bustle I forgot to put on my deodorant. I made a quick stop at a 7 - 11 store for some Speed Stick, applied it in the car and was ready for a hot, humid day.
A day later I had breakfast with a good friend* and following our meal he told me he had a gift in the car for me. We often exchange Southern Gospel CD's so I thought that was what he'd give me. To my surprise he handed my two (2) Speed Stick 24/7 deodorant sticks. What was he trying to tell me? A subtle hint? A strange gift...you must be thinking. Where was he yesterday morning when I needed his "gift"? He came a day late.
Sweet Smelling Gift
Now that I've got my personal hygiene story out of the way...let me get to my application.
The apostle Paul wrote to the Philippian believers to thank them for their generosity. They were the only church that had communicated with Paul in a financial way as he traveled to encourage the early Church. Paul writes of what those gifts meant to him and to the Lord he served. He penned these words which have been favorites of mine for years. "You sent me aid again and again when I was in need. Not that I am looking for a gift, but I am looking for what may be crdited to your account...the gifts you sent...they are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God." - Philippians 4: 16-18 (NIV) The gifts Paul received were "an odour of a sweet smell" according to the King James Version rendition.
Recently a friend gave me a special "gift", the gift of praying for me at a critical time. That was a "fragrant offering"!
When we give gifts of love, money, time, affection, kindness or whatever...they are like a sweet, smelling savor not only to the recipients but to our heavenly Father.
Let's give those unique and special gifts that brighten the lives of the ones we touch. Two deodorant sticks can be "special" even if they're a day late! Thanks!!!
* the identity of the generous donor has been withheld to protect the innocent