I have a list of 20 or so verses on my phone to send out to friends sometimes and I love soaking them up myself so I figured I'd make a concerted effort to write about one here each week. Y'all hold me to it, mkay? 2 faithful readers o'mine :)
"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
Our Care Group is doing a study on the Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. Tonight we talked about the love language of Gift Giving. This is my second love language, with my first being Words of Affirmation. Y'all better be taking notes ;) I love giving gifts but when receiving, I find the gift of presence to be most meaningful. This verse does a beautiful job illustrating how God calls us to lavish "gifts" on others because the bottom line is to LOVE ONE ANOTHER.
I've written here before about Donald Miller (and how much I love his books!). In Blue Like Jazz, he talks about Christian culture using love as a commodity. Essentially bartering with it. Here's an interview he gave about this idea:
"We sometimes take a Darwinian approach with love - if we are against somebody's ideas, we starve them out. If we disagree with somebody's political ideas, or sexual identity, we just don't "pay" them. We refuse to "condone the behavior" by offering any love.
This approach has created a Christian culture that is completely unaware what the greater culture thinks of us. We don't interact with people who don't validate our ideas. There is nothing revolutionary here. This mindset is hardly a breath of fresh air to a world that uses the exact same kinds of techniques.The opposite is biblical love, which loves even enemies, loves unconditionally, and loves liberally. Loving selectively is worldly; giving it freely is miraculous."
But what, pray tell, does it mean to be "pressed down, shaken together and running over"? After a quick google search, I learned this, from www.answers.yahoo.com:
"It's a reference to how they did business in the markets in the East. When we buy a box of cheerio's today, it's filled by weight, and you'll notice that it settles down and there's lots of room left. If you were to buy cheerio's in a market in Jesus' time, they would fill up the box, press it down, shake it to get all of the air out, and then fill it again, so you had a completely filled, running over box of Cheerio's."
Makes sense, right?
So, let's go out and give our love away. After all, "the measure you use will be measured to you"...and who doesn't love receiving gifts?