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Ephesians 2:8-9 – For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast. (NIV)

A few days ago, I jotted a note in my journal about a gift I was offered when a new store opened its doors and welcomed the local population to come and shop. As soon as I stepped inside the store, I was greeted with a friendly smile, something I've grown to expect from this type of store. However, what I wasn't expecting was a second greeting, but this day, a gentleman in a crisp, white shirt approached me with a broad smile. "Have you received your free gift today?" he asked, and thrust a small package into my hand.

I looked down at the attractive presentation case and smiled. "Thank you, a pen — something every writer can use." I was about to take it out of its case when the man added, "All you have to do is answer a few questions. Now, could I have your name and address?"

"I'm sorry, but what does knowing my address have to do with my receiving a free gift?"

"Oh, we want you to keep the gift, but we need to have your address so we can send you our credit card."

"Thank you," I replied. "I don't need a credit card at the moment."

What happened next surprised me. "Okay, I'll take that," the gentleman said, and reached over to take the pen from my hand. Did I hear him right? Hadn't he said the pen was a free gift? The incident started me thinking. When it comes to receiving a gift, I prefer the ones that are given like God's gift of salvation — an offering of love, with no strings attached.

God's gift is free. We won't be asked to pay for the gift because the price was paid in full when Jesus died on the cross. Best of all, when we accept God's gift, our debt is marked, "Paid in full", and our wrongdoings are no longer remembered.

Prayer: – Dear God, we come to You today to say thank You for Your marvellous gift of salvation. Amen.

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About the author:

Elaine Ingalls Hogg <authorhogg@yahoo.ca>
Smiths Creek, New Brunswick, Canada

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