Have you ever noticed that Jesus was all about giving? Giving of time, self, effort, and money. We often get hung up on the money part of this verse, as though the only thing we’d ever give or that God would be interested in is financial.
While Luke 6:38 is true about money, let’s take a minute to look at the other things we give that come back to us.
Time. When we are willing to interrupt our day to include someone in it, to give them the moments they need to feel valued, we receive in that moment as well.
Self. We read Jesus’ words that there is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for friends and think about literal, physical death. But what if that also includes laying aside my wants, needs, and desires in order to help you meet yours? What if laying my life down means putting aside the shopping trips or other plans in order to be caregiver for a parent? What if the simplest act of preparing a meal for my family is laying my life down?
Effort/Talents. We have each been given unique gifts and talents by the Lord. We are designed to complement one another. (That’s the other complement, not the saying nice things about each other.) My gifts and talents fill in where yours don’t reach, and his fill in over here where ours don’t cover, and hers extend to the part that’s still missing until the whole of whatever mission is complete. If we were all great at writing, where would the art come from? If we were all talented at speaking, who would be touching and sharing personally? I think God gives us these skills and talents to allow us to prosper throughout our lives, but I think we’re also to give those away at times, too.
My husband has amazing skills as a car and small engine mechanic. He’s one who never learned from a book. He often hears an engine and diagnoses the problem. I’ve seen him take in a car with an engine that was in parts and within a week – that was working on it after his regular job – have it all together and going again. Those skills put food on our table when he was laid off from that regular job and also helped many who needed work done but couldn’t afford the shop mechanics, because he gifted the work to the person.
We all have so much! Not necessarily funds, but life. We have love enough to give away. We have time we can utilize for others. We have words and joy and laughter and peace and talents and so much more that we can share.
When we do, those things we’ve given return to us. We have time shared with us, talents offered, energy given, and love poured out—in exponential doses.
Let’s start this today, this giving, pouring out, sharing, and loving, without reservation, knowing that God is aware and replacing every effort from His storehouse. And not only replacing, but blessing in measures we can’t imagine.
A few extra thoughts…
I know that sometimes it feels like we do for people and we do and we do and we do and we don’t get anything in return. Been there, have felt that. See, we’re not supposed to be doing those things expecting this return, we’re supposed to be doing these kinds of things because we love Jesus.
To say that we don’t have time? We all have 168 hours per week. We can figure out someplace where we can take away 30 minutes to make a phone call or a visit or to write a card. It might mean sacrificing somewhere else. Laying down our lives. I don’t like it either y’all. I don’t. But if I love the Lord and I want to be used by Him to help other people, I have to decide to get off the throne of my life and let Him be on it.
And when it comes to our money, we shouldn’t shirk with it either. He allows us to have the money we have, and – let me tell you something: I have been in that place where I did not know where my next meal was coming from. I’ve been in the place where I went for help to be able to feed my child. I’ve been there. I know that place. I also know that when you have funds, when you have extra, when you allow the Lord to prompt you, you can give from that to be able to help others.
Do you remember when you’ve asked for help and how amazing it felt to receive it? Now imagine being the one who can give the hell And the reward that you receive in the moment that you give is better than what you felt when you received it. When you receive the help you feel this, “Oh, good, I can make that bill.” “Oh great. I’ll be able to have food in the house.” A great relief. Stress is lifted.
But when you’re the one who gives, oh my goodness! To see that relief in a person’s eyes, to know that they can have pride in what they are able to accomplish, to know that They’re going to be able to take that next step in their lives.
When you see somebody whose value clicks in their mind just because you decided to spend an hour visiting with them? Y’all! That’s a heart feeling that you can’t get anywhere else, and it comes from giving.
So let’s give that a try today. Let’s look in our own warehouse. What do we have that we can give? Are there phone calls you can make? Are there grocery trips you can make for somebody else? Are there special things that you can prepare for someone? Do you know somebody who would really like to have a visit and maybe some cookies or bowl of fruit or whatever you can provide? Is there somebody you know that is struggling and that little bit of money you’ve been holding back could help them. I don’t know. I don’t know what your thing is. But I know that if you ask God, He will tell you. Just let the Holy Spirit speak to your heart and move you to what you need to be doing.
Coffee, Bible, Journal.
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