Gifts are given for many reasons, and often for reasons that are not apparent at the time. It can be a gesture of thanks or appreciation, or even as a token of love. A gift or a present given without the hope of exchange or anything in return is a non-gift. Even if that present is already owned by another person, a non-gift is not always a worthy gift.
There are different kinds of gifts: there are material gifts and spiritual gifts. Material gifts include things like money, which are gifts of enjoyment and possessions. Spiritual gifts, however, go beyond material possessions and include gifts of wisdom, compassion, discernment, and conversion. Many gifts are in between, and it depends upon the people for whom they are given what value.
Generally speaking, there are three kinds of endowments. The first kind is given in honor of the giver, for a service or occasion. The second kind is a donation, given without expectation of anything in return. The third kind of endowment is a charitable gift, given with no expectation of any return. Charitable gifts are not necessarily very costly, but they have to be something a person does not already have. The most common charitable gifts are the donations of time, talent, money, and services.
There are two main ways to give gifts – planned giving and unplanned giving. With planned giving, the giver anticipates a concrete benefit from the gift recipient. For example, a graduate student may give an academic book as a graduation gift. However, if the student plans on using the gift for teaching job search, it may be a good idea to give a laptop computer to a business owner who needs to travel often. On the other hand, if he plans to teach in a school, books would be more appropriate.
Unplanned giving, on the other hand, involves a lack of planning. It can be anything. It can be a gift of time or something given without any expectation. Gifts in the nature of ‘something given freely’ is commonly referred to as charity. It is one of the basic ways to show one’s love to others.
Ephesians teaches that faith which is a certain inner thing has power in and of itself, whereas worldly things which are of the outward nature have no advantage at all in all. So we see that the best gifts, both spiritual and tangible, have a dual character. They are also the gifts of wisdom and knowledge. Wisdom consists of turning aside from temptations, and knowledge consists of discerning things which will be profitable. Wisdom and knowledge are related in the perfection of the person.
So in order to turn things around for the person and turn them into blessings, the person needs to possess wisdom and knowledge. Wisdom consists of discerning things which will benefit the person and knowledge consists of turning aside from the things which will not profit but are contrary to the person’s will. Knowledge comes with the use of the words of God. prophecy comes with the use of God’s word. And to prophesy is to work with gifts of the word knowledge and the word wisdom.
This is why the giver should make sure that the gifts that they give are from the heart. It is more personal than a common gift, which is bought in a store. When it comes to gift giving it should be the giver’s heart and soul. A giver who really loves his or her giver will give even if it costs a little more than he or she expected. And a giver who loves the receiver will give even more than the giver expects.