Giving And Receiving

December 8, 2010
by Azalia Matheson

Luke 6:38 – 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. (NIV)

Recently I had cause to remember the wonderful blessing I received after giving my last few dollars to a friend in need.

Many years ago, money was really scarce in our home. We had three children to feed and clothe, drugs to buy, braces to provide, and dentist bills to pay — you know the story. We often had to rob Peter to pay Paul in order to keep things going. At that time, I was a stay-at-home mom; we had no second salary coming in.

One afternoon, a young woman called in to visit me. She said that she was in the vicinity and thought that she would stop by for a wee chat. However, from the moment that she arrived, I knew in my heart by her uneasy actions that she was there for a special reason. But I just could not seem to get her to talk about the real reason for her visit. I played very cool over a cup of tea, not wanting to invade her privacy with questions. After about an hour into her visit, she confided that her daughter needed new shoes and a dress for a special school Christmas concert coming up within a few days. She just did not know where she was going to get the money to buy the things the little girl needed.

I pondered her plight in mind and spirit, knowing that I had thirty dollars in my wallet that was to pay my Sears bill due within a few days. Quietly to myself, without her knowing, I prayed that the Lord would open a door and that I would somehow find myself able to give her the money to buy the clothing that the little girl would need.

She stayed quite a while, and after praying together that the Lord would provide her with the money she needed, we made our way to the back door. When she was about to leave, I picked up my purse, and without a second thought as to how I was going to pay my Sears bill, I gave her the thirty dollars to purchase the articles she needed for her young daughter.

On the way back into the house, I noticed my summer jacket hanging in the garage and thought, I must wash this jacket and put it away for spring next year. I put my hand in the pocket to take out any tissues that I might have left there, and, lo and behold! to my amazement, out came a fifty dollar bill — more than I had given to my friend and more than I needed at that time. God was good: He did honour my prayers and made it possible for me to be gracious and kind to my friend in need. In the end, I was richer than I had been before. I did reap much more than I had sown.

Often when the Christmas season arrives, I think of my friend and her little girl and the wonderful evening we spent together at the school presentation a few days later. The mom invited me to attend the lovely little concert, and the joy I received that day was worth the thirty dollars a hundred times over. I also had change to spare and paid my Sears bill on time.

God's Word teaches us "the words the Lord Jesus himself said: 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'" (Acts 20:35b NIV) God never lies and we must trust Him when we wonder, Is it really better to give, or will I hold on to what I have, for me? We must always remember that He gave His all for us. Let us receive His wonderful gift and enjoy a marvellous eternity with Him.

Prayer: Gracious and loving Father, You who are the giver of every good and perfect gift, we thank You for the many precious gifts we have, and we ask You to teach us to share with others not only our material wealth but the joy and blessing we have in knowing You as Saviour and Lord. May we never neglect to help those we know who need our love and material assistance with a joyful and loving heart, knowing that Your Word tells us, "It is better to give than to receive." Thank You for providing us with the most wonderful gift of all — the gift of eternal life, for those who seek to follow You. Amen.

About the author:

Azalia Matheson <themathesons@bellaliant.net>
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada

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