Copyright © 2020 Ed Bagley
I think it is true: God
gives men 4 crucial gifts: The Gift of Life, The Gift of Choice, The Gift of
Faith and The Gift of Women.
The Holy Trinity is really
three persons in one—God the Father, the Creator of Creation as we know it; God
the Son, Jesus, who by being crucified on the cross becomes our redeemer by
canceling out our original sin passed down from Adam and also becomes our savior by arising from the dead so that
we might be heirs to eternal life in heaven; and the Holy Spirit, the Lord and
giver of life as we know it and live it on Planet Earth.
Here is why we are the
benefactors of God’s 4 crucial gifts:
The Gift of Life
Without the Gift of Life we
would not exist. We exist through the grace of God, our Creator.
Following is one example of
why God remains relevant in today’s world:
Jesus said to His apostle Thomas (the “Doubting Thomas” as he would become known):
“You have seen me and now you believe. Blessed are those who have not seen me, yet still believe.”
Lesson: The knowledge of
belief is a lifesaving gift. We are the only animal on Planet Earth who knows
we will eventually die. When we die, we will lose our consciousness and
experience either nothingness, or a life with our Father in heaven, even though
we do not now know exactly what that afterlife will be.
Which is the better choice?
Jesus said: “I am the way, and the truth, and the life.” He was not kidding. To be blunt, He said it is either my way or no way.
We know that all good things
come to an end, and nothing stays the same.
The Holy Bible teaches us
that no one can come to the Holy Father except through Jesus, and that while
doing good works is a Christian practice that is highly valued, we will
ultimately be saved by the grace of God, and not by our good works in helping
The apostle Mark tells us that Jesus said: “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.”
What is important about this
message from Jesus is that you believe in Him and His word. The fact that you
are also baptized is an important act of saying that you believe in God’s word,
you are entering a new life with Jesus, and you are washed clean of the past
and your sins.
Baptism for an adult simply
means that your heart, not your mind, is changed by a leap of faith in Jesus;
that is, you have found a better, more fulfilling way to live life here on
Earth, God’s place for us to live when we are granted the gift of life through
Spirit, the Lord, and giver
No specific act of doing
good, including baptism, is necessary for you to be saved. If you were a
believer and practicing your belief according to God’s plan for your life, you
would still be saved, even if you were not aware that baptism, according to
some believers, is a necessary condition to be saved. You will be saved by your
belief, not your baptism.
That said, baptism will give
you additional protection as a Christian because it is an act of faith and
belief in God’s word. In the Catholic faith, baptism is the first of seven
sacraments that are vital to the Catholic faith.
Many Christians believe that
being baptized opens you up to receiving the Holy Spirit, and the protection of
God’s angels, who have been messengers of His holy word.
God is really 3 persons in
1) God, who created the
universe and every good thing in it.
2) Jesus, who suffered an
excruciating death on the cross to forgive our sins (the times when we have
strayed from God’s plan for our lives), thus becoming our redeemer; and then
arose from the dead (thereby conquering death on Earth), thus becoming our
savior so that we might spend our continued life with God the Father in heaven.
3) and the Holy Spirit, the
Lord, the giver of life on Earth, and the inspiration for every good deed that
happens during our existence on Earth, including a sense of compassion,
kindness, understanding, forgiveness, acceptance, approval and, most important,
love for one another.
The Gift of Choice
Jesus said: “Love your neighbor as you love yourself” . . . “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (for example, if you do not want to be killed, then do not kill others).
This is simply said but
difficult for us to achieve completely because of the devil, who appeals to our
baser wants and desires in being human, including greed, envy, lust, lying, cheating,
stealing, power, influence, pride, hatefulness, and gluttony.
The devil is any evil thing
that prevents us from being the person God wants us to be, knowing that if we
believe in God and follow Him, our life will be better for our belief and behavior.
The devil is out to destroy our sense of goodness, and the spirit of God is
always present to remind us that our spirit of goodness will always remain the
better choice for our well-being.
We exercise our gift of
choice when we sin simply because we are foolish. We foolishly think sinning
gives us pleasure and perhaps a sense of satisfaction when, in fact, it
ultimately gives us nothing but heartache and unrest.
We think taking another
drink (as an alcoholic), taking another drug (as a drug addict), consciously
lying, cheating and stealing (to increase our own wealth and material
possessions at the expense of others), or giving into concupiscence (having an
affair with our fellow worker or casual acquaintance for the thrill of the
excitement, attention and ego boost) will give us more happiness and pleasure
when, in fact, it does just the opposite—we yearn for more of what we should
not have or do, then desire more, and are never satisfied.
There might be some sense of
satisfaction but there can be no real happiness and peace of mind when we sin.
All sin leaves us with is the desire for more of the wrong tonic—guilt, shame,
uneasiness, or all three.
We want to do better, but we
do not choose to do better because sacrifice, discipline, and loyalty seem even
more difficult than sinning.
The choice between doing
good and evil is not a concept, it is a real life choice we face every day and
every moment of our lives. Every choice in life that we make has a consequence,
and some consequences are more severe to our survival than others.
That is why sinning becomes
such a lure; some of our sins do not provide us with immediate feedback on the
long-term consequences of our actions (it takes very little time to become an
alcoholic, a drug addict, or an adulterer).
The beauty of the gift of
choice is that when we do things that will destroy us, we always have—because
of our gift of free will—the opportunity to change our course of action by
making a better choice. And better choices will produce better consequences.
When we sin and do not
believe in Jesus, it is never too late to accept God the Farther, Jesus the Son
and the Holy Spirit into our lives, and benefit from the blessings, mercy and
grace that God the Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit can bring us.
Lesson: If you hear his
voice today, harden not your heart. When in doubt, follow your heart, not your
In the Book of Proverbs, we
read that as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.
It is our heart that rules our final destiny, not our mind. Our mind is the devil’s playground, our heart is God’s place of rebirth and redemption, wherein goodness always remains an option through our forgiveness by the grace of God.
Lesson: God will reward our
good choices and forgive our bad ones. Only the devil will encourage our bad
choices; God will never do so because He is incapable of sin.
The more you do what God
wants, the less the devil will influence your life, but you must continually
choose to do the right thing with the right motives for the right reasons to
get the right results.
Lesson: Trust in the
Lord in all things and lean not unto your own understanding (your way of
The Gift of Faith
When everyone has abandoned
us, and there is no hope that our life will get any better anytime soon, we can
always count of this reality: God is with us and will never abandon us in our
hour of need. We just need faith in our choice to follow God’s plan for our
Our gift of faith is joined
at the hip by our longing for hope. Hope that there is something positive in
our future that causes us to hang onto the precious gift of life. When a person
loses all sense of hope they are a candidate for suicide to end it all.
We can solve our problems, loneliness and discouragement by using the talents He has given us. We must pray like it depends upon God, but act like it depends on us. God gives the birds food to eat, but He does not put it in their nest—they must work by going out and finding it, and so it is with us. The more effort we make doing the right things with right motives, the more God will recognize and reward our efforts.
Some people think that
because God the Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit can do anything, they should
do everything. Some common examples of apparent injustice happening to helpless
people include a child dying of an incurable disease, people being killed by a
natural disaster, or someone drinking and driving and killing an entire family
during a head-on collision.
These are all tragic events
that are part of our everyday life. We wish these events were not part of our
everyday life, but they are, and we feel helpless and inadequate in preventing
them. The prevalent thought is: How can a God of justice and mercy allow this
The answer is as complex as
the triune God itself, the trinity of God the Father, Jesus and the Holy
Spirit. In brief, if God were to prevent every tragedy on Planet Earth from
happening, He would have to take away our free will, destroying our ability to
act (make conscious choices) in our own self best-interest.
The problem is, without the
ability to accept or reject God by using our free will, we would have no way to
connect with God after death here on Earth without our conscious choice to
accept and believe in Him while we are still alive.
Another consideration lies
in the oneness of goodness. If we never experienced both good and evil, we
would not be able to distinguish the difference between the two behaviors.
We can experience unwanted
tragedy and suffer from our bad decisions and mistakes in judgment. We can also
learn from our mistakes, and when doing wrong, make a different, better choice
to do the right thing with right thinking and right motives the next time.
We should never assign blame
for our circumstances because, when we blame others, we give up our power to
change. And if we lack the will for change, there is no one who can show us the
way. Not even Jesus Christ. When you turn your back on Jesus, He turns His back
It is important to
appreciate that while we will never be perfect (we will sin because it is in
our nature), we can learn from our mistakes.
When we encounter adversity and
do not what to do or say, prayer provides as answer to fill the vacuum of
doubt, fear and uncertainty. There is tremendous power in prayer.
Even in the best of times,
we could and should pray in thankfulness for power and glory of the triune God
in our life.
It is also important to
appreciate that adversity does not build character. Just as we can learn from
our mistakes, we can gain character from our disappointments. It is our
response to disappointment that builds character. We cannot always prevent what
happens to us, but we can always control our attitude and response to what
happens to us in everyday life.
Fear and fatigue block the
mind. Confront both, and courage and confidence will flow into us. Understand
that when stability becomes a habit, maturity and clarity follow. Do not be
confused by the devil.
God gives us the opportunity
to live our life on a higher plain by exercising our ability to
choose wisely. This not only pleases God but helps us better prepare for our life after death if, by God’s grace, we are able to join Him with His Son Jesus and the Holy Spirit in heaven. In heaven we will not have to worry about evil. We may well be helping people avoid evil by watching over them from afar.
We should continually praise
and thank God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit for their blessings, and most
certainly for their mercy and grace in our present life.
The Gift of Women
God recognized man’s loneliness and created women to help him along his way. The union of man and woman allows for the creation of new life, a most precious gift indeed.
If man only had himself he
would get bored and tired in a hurry. Women were made in part to listen to
man’s greatest accomplishments, worst failures and absolute foolishness.
Women are the equal, if not
superior of men, in many good traits that matter in the union of relationships
involving both men and women–compassion, kindness, understanding, forgiveness,
acceptance, approval and, most important, love for one another to name just a
Some men say they cannot
live with women or without women. That is pure nonsense. If men did not have
women in their life, Adam would have died in the Garden of Eden alone and life
as we know would have stopped.
It is women, with the help
of men, who conceive and bear the children who continue human existence on
earth. We will all die eventually and if we do not see the generation coming
behind us, life would not be as joyful, despite the challenges, as we carry on
to our eventual destiny.
While it may be difficult
for some men to admit, women can complete men, meaning that a man is always
better off with a woman in his life. It is possible for men to complete women.
The union of a man and a woman can make both better as a unit operating together
rather than apart.
There are other gifts in our
life, including God-given talent, intelligence and creativeness to mention
three, but without a proper appreciation and understanding of first four great
gifts, the rest would be window dressing. We create and develop every other
gift in life because of the first four.
If you have read this far, you have a lot of stick-to-itiveness and patience. Whatever you think of one man’s opinion and belief, remember that it is one man’s opinion of the crucial importance of life—there are others with just as strong or greater beliefs.