I am not a Biblical scholar, nor do I think I have all of the answers about life and God. But I can say with absolute certainty that through my personal relationship with Jesus Christ and studying/applying the Bible to my life, I am a changed person.
One of the truly amazing things about the Bible is that I can read the same passage of scripture ten times, and the eleventh time I will get something new from it – a perspective that I hadn’t seen before – which brings me to this…
I was recently reading in Luke chapter 6 where Jesus says to His disciples and followers: 38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
I have always heard this passage associated with the giving of tithes and offerings – but something struck me as I was reading it – something that leads me to believe that Jesus wasn’t speaking about money here. One thing I have learned from studying the Bible is that you have to look at the verses before and after a passage to truly understand the context. So in the verse before, Jesus says: 37 “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Then He says: Give, and it will be given to you…
Jesus is talking to His disciples and followers about their HEART. Judging, condemning and forgiving are all attitudes of the heart. So I believe in the very next verse when He talks about giving, He is still speaking about our heart – giving from our heart and pouring our heart (ourselves) into other people’s lives.
Because right after that He says: 39“Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall into a pit?
I think Jesus is telling His followers: Grow up! Be spiritually mature so that you can help others I put in your path. Don’t judge them or condemn them, and then you’ll be able to help them. And the measure that you pour into their lives, it will generously be poured back into yours.
Pouring into people’s lives does come with a cost. When you open your heart, your home and your life to help someone else, it can feel overwhelming and even exasperating at times, especially when you don’t “see” any outward progress. When you love big you run the risk of hurting big. But the seeds we sow into other lives that Jesus died for – they are eternal. God sees our sacrifices of the heart and He promises to repay us – not because we earned it, but because He is a good and faithful Father. I have experienced both overwhelming joy and pain by pouring into the lives of the people God put in my path. But through tears of happiness and grief, I know God has a purpose for it all. Even though I don’t always understand, I know I was faithful to do my part and that’s all that He asks. And I know that I can expect someone to pour their life into mine, because the promises of God are real. We all need each other. We are the family of God and it’s time we all start living like it.
So I look forward to the next person that God calls me and my family to pour in to. People need love, acceptance and kindness – not judgment – now more than ever. Everyone has a story, and I want mine to be that I poured my heart – my life – into as many people as God saw fit to put in my path. I want my children to learn this. There is no legacy greater than the legacy of love, which Jesus demonstrated in the greatest of ways.
“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”
I still have a lot to learn about love and sacrifice – thankfully I have the perfect Teacher to help me.