No! I am not talking about money. Everyone knows that people hate it when preachers talk about money. Well, maybe not those who understand the place of money in worship, but that's for another blog. So, I am not going to talk about money, but I am going to talk about giving.
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.” Luke 6:38
This is an amazing promise, but it is talking about anything we can give back to the Lord. And we can give back to Him anything that He gives us. This promise says that the Lord gives to us according to the measure we use. Yet, at the same time, it says that He is giving abundantly more. This might not make sense at first, but we have to remember that the Lord doesn't need anything we might give Him. He is not interested in 'what' we give as much as 'how' we give. It is our attitude that is important to Him. And He gives with the same attitude. The attitude might be similar but the amount will never be. Because I have a limited amount of anything, and the Lord has a limited supply of everything, the attitude can be the same, but He will always outgive those who give to Him. If I am stingy, then I might give 1% of whatever I am giving, but His stingy giving will still far exceed what I have given. In the same way, if I give with a spirit of liberality, my liberality is still limited by the finite supply of what I am giving. When the Lord matches my spirit of liberality, watch out because in order for Him to match my attitude, He must open the floodgates of Heaven and pour it out like Niagara Falls.
When we think about giving, our mind quickly jumps to money, but this promise can be applied to anything that can be given to Him. Are you liberal or stingy with your love...your mercy...your forgiveness?? He will match your attitude as He gives to you. But what about time? Are you stingy or liberal in the amount of time you give to Him each day? When you consider the amount of time that you work or sleep, watch television, or whatever else, is the amount of time set aside for the Lord each day and each week stingy or liberal?
We are bound within the confines of time, but the Lord exists outside of time. Time is something that He creates at His will. We cannot forget how Joshua asked the Lord to stop the sun to give them light to finish a battle. The Lord stopped the sun and gave Israel an extra day of light. Ok. Baldy just went off the deep end!!! Are you trying to tell us that God will stop the sun for us?!? No, that is not exactly what I am saying, but He could do that if He chose. However, I am saying that the Lord has a way of causing things that you expect to take all day to be finished in an hour. So many times I have been concerned about getting everything done that I have on my todo list, and then someone will call and ask to reschedule a meeting. Suddenly, the Lord has given me an extra hour or two.
As a church, we have chose the emphasis "On Fire!" We want to be a church on fire. A church on fire can't wait to come into the House of the Lord. A church on fire gives the Lord their time. Not only do we need to give the Lord time each day, but we need to make our weekly gathering a priority. But let's not just give Him the minimum. Let's give generously. Let's not just show up on time for church, but come early. Enjoy the fellowship. Be a blessing to someone. Pray, encourage, laugh, and give life to others. Then, when it is time to set aside time to worship and praise Him, come in to the sanctuary and give yourself fully to Him in worship. In the time that you listen to the message, don't just listen, but take notes and go back over them later with the Lord. Let's give Him our time liberally. And He will give time back to us pressed down, shaken together, and running over.