Hidden Nuggets Series #69 – “And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” – Matthew 2:11
One of the more intriguing stories that surrounds the birth of Jesus is the visit from the Magi, the wise men from the East. We don’t know exactly where they came from (many speculate ancient Persia) and we don’t know how many there were. We do know they arrived sometime after the birth of Jesus because they came to visit Mary, Joseph and the boy at a house (Matthew 2:11) not in the stable, which many traditional scenes have depicted.
As they entered the house that day, the wise men came bearing gifts…gifts fit for a king. The Bible says as they bowed before Jesus they presented their treasures of gold, frankincense and myrrh. While to us the reader those gifts may seem spectacular, they were ordinary gifts often given to kings as tribute. The wise men recognized Jesus as such a king, a gesture whose meaning must have meant something special to the humble parents Mary and Joseph.
Many have speculated as to the symbolism of the three gifts: gold being a symbol of kingship; frankincense as a symbol of deity; myrrh as a symbol of death. To me, the message the wise men intended to send with these gifts misses the point. What we should draw from this is that they were giving something of value to be used for – as they saw it in their eyes – the King.
Our Gifts Fit for a King
Yes, we all have something of value to give. That could include money given to the local church, to a missionary or some other charitable organization doing work to help others.
When I read the Biblical terminology of “giving gifts”, my thoughts don’t always turn to money. Often I’m left pondering a different angle. Could the gifts I’m to give also refer to the talents and abilities at my disposal? Am I also freely giving of those? Am I using my gifts that are fit for a King and His use?
Have you ever thought of how you’ve been gifted? What special talents do you have? What obviously stands out as something you are good at doing?
I can teach. I have the ability to write. I’m a good listener. I can organize, lead and coach a team. I’m able to counsel people about life and spiritual issues, including those related to money. I still have decent athletic skills for someone my age. I have skills in building and a few handyman areas.
Am I using those effectively enough?
What skills am I not utilizing at all?
What talents am I not even aware of?
Am I holding back on using a gift for some reason?
Are any of my gifts and talents being used to serve others?
These are all questions I ask from time to time and am challenging you to consider today. As we draw on the dawn of a new year, lay your gifts and talents down at the feet of Jesus. Use them to advance His cause and impact people in 2015.
Questions: What are you most talented at? Which gift/talent do you wish you could utilize more? How do you plan to use your gifts and abilities in 2015?
Next Post: Reshaping My Focus in 2015
Prior Post: If You Have Never Read the Christmas Story…