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Gifts Which Are Difficult to Accept

Tim Keller writes:

Imagine an aging man whose hearing is failing but who is in denial about it. He usually complains that it is other people who are mumbling. But finally, his wife gets him to go get his hearing tested.

The clear verdict is that he needs hearing aids, but when he sees what they cost, he is taken aback. He says, “We can’t afford that.” But his wife counters and says, “Buy the best ones and consider it a gift from me.”

That sounds nice, but the man realizes that to accept this gift is to admit weakness. It would be like saying, “Thanks so much for this. Indeed, I am an aging man who can’t hear what people are telling me!”

Possible Preaching Angle:

There is no way to receive some gifts without admitting your need. The gospel is the ultimate gift that requires such a radical admission.

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