I recently had a birthday and a great friend gave me a wonderful gift. I was so excited that I wanted to tell everyone about the wonderful gift. The hitch, my friend did not want me to tell everyone about the gift because that person did not pay for the gift. They had gotten the gift for free.
I was always told that the gift is a great one if it comes from the heart. I remember growing up and knowing that my grandmother would spend many minutes selecting the right card to send to me. She would always send a dollar bill with the card. When I was in college, I specifically remember going with my cousin to the New York Plantetarium and my grandmother giving each of us a five dollar bill. It wasn’t a whole lot of money even back then but it meant the world to me. My grandmother was on a very fixed income and probably could have used those ten dollars but thought of us first.
In the bible, it says “Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up.” Romans 15 2-3 Jesus also gave us the second greatest commandment, “Love your neighbor as yourself” Matthew 22: 34 (NIV). My friend was following both of these scriptures. He was thinking of me when he gave me those flowers. He knew I would love to receive them and that it would make my day. He could have just left the flowers and decided not to take it upon himself to bring them to me. (It would have been easier just to ignore them.) Instead, he made the effort to remember to bring them to me.
I hope I live up to my friend and my grandmother’s examples of following Jesus’s commandment. I try to think of others and what would build them up. However, sometimes it is easier to just think of myself and fulfilling my desires and needs. Although, I have to say that when I do follow Jesus’s commandment I get a far greater reward and satisfaction then I ever do just fulfilling my desires and needs.