Since we’re on a Charles Dickens theme at Island ECC, I couldn’t help but think of one of his most memorable lines and scenes. In the story “Oliver Twist,” Oliver and the other children at an orphanage are only fed three bowls of thin gruel (like a very watery oatmeal congee) a day and are always desperately hungry. One day, it falls to Oliver to speak up for all of them. The kids watch in silence as he fearfully makes the long walk across the room, approaches the angry orphanage master and timidly holds out his bowl.
“Please, sir, I want some more.” He gets a sharp blow to his head and an uproar follows.
By contrast, throughout Scripture, we see that God is a loving Father, the Father of lights from whom we receive every good and perfect gift (James 1:17).
In Christ, our identity changes from an orphan, abandoned and lost, to being found and adopted into the safety and security of God’s family. “For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received the spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’” (Romans 8:15).
Unlike Oliver, who made his plea with head down and eyes lowered, we can approach God’s throne with confidence (Hebrews 4:16), knowing that if we ask our Heavenly Father for more, He doesn’t just give us what we ask for, but gives immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20).
Amidst all the festivities of Christmas, take a moment to thank our Father for giving the greatest gift of all: “God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)