"Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again."
During this time of financial crisis, many interpret this scripture to mean that if we give money then we will receive more money than what we had given away. Unfortunately however, this is a very narrow interpretation of this verse. In addition, no mention is made of money in this verse, yet many of us assume that Jesus was speaking about money. All that Jesus was really saying is that if you are a giver, or a person who is generous, then you will benefit abundantly from the generosity of others in return.
Do you want to experience true abundance? Then give of yourself, time, talent, and finances to others. Give money to those in need, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, house the homeless. Perform those random acts of kindness to even perfect strangers. Give love and affection to those around you, spend more time with your children and/or spouse, volunteer at your children's school, or at a hospital. There are just so many ways in which we can give of ourselves, time, and resources. If we do that, and give of ourselves to others, then God will look down from heaven, and reward us for our generosity.
I know for myself, volunteering at church to teach the teen class has been a rewarding experience. No, I do not get paid for my services at church, but teaching this class has sharpened my Biblical knowledge, and has led me to a closer walk with God. Because of those weekly classes, I am able to have a positive impact on the youth in our church. My reward has been the satisfication of knowing that I am helping others and making a difference in their lives. In addition, teaching the teen class has also helped me in my career as a Physical Therapist. My ability to educate and instruct my patients and co-workers in healthy living has become more effective, because of better teaching skills on my part. Truly, when you give, you get back so much more.
Here are some practical tips:
1. Are you out of work with lots of spare time on hand? Try volunteering somewhere. When you volunteer, you gain practical skills that can help you land a future job. The volunteer job can also provide you with valuable references and the ability to network with others in finding a job.
2. If you are employed, volunteer to do extra work at your job. Your boss will see you as a valuable employee, and will be more reluctant to fire you or lay you off from the job.
3. Be kind to others, but do not look for the person to whom you have been generous, to return the favor. You may be in for a big let down; but people sometimes do surprise us and return a favor, especially in situations of need. In most instances however, your reward will come from someone else whom God will send to reward you, or from someone who remembered some kind thing you did for them long ago, and they now want to show their appreciation with some type of material gift. People have acquired houses, cars, money, furniture and so on, in this way, because someone wanted to reward them for their kind acts.
In conclusion, be generous and life will be generous to you!