Life Is Rich!
As I read Luke 6:38 I was immediately taken back to my college days . . . room 316, Culbertson Hall at Moody Bible Institute as I listened to a friend’s album of the Imperials.
The song was “Bread Upon the Water” . . . I can actually picture myself singing along with the album, “Press down, shaken together, soon it’s going to back to you on every wave.” As soon as I read verse 38, I opened a tab on my computer and went searching. It took a couple of tries because I wanted the actual album version of the song. I played it and sang along with it . . . I even got a banana to use as a microphone (No I didn’t really do that). At any rate, that was a great moment for me. It caused me to quickly think back through my life and see the reality of that song as it has played out in my life. I truly have been rich!
It’s interesting how quickly I want to compare myself with others . . . what do they have that I don’t or what can they do that I can’t? But I guess that’s the competitive nature that is a part of me and it seems to be the standard for society. I want to score a ten . . . or at least a 9.5 if another has scored a 9. 0. The problem is, “Compared to others” should not be a part of my vocabulary.
As I get older, I learn more and more that “things” really don’t matter. In fact, there are a lot of things I do that really don’t matter. As have quickly thought back through my life, my thoughts were about God’s faithfulness to me . . . even though I’ve fallen short! What I thought about were people and my relationship with them, not about the games I’ve won against them, I thought about different ones that I have watched blossom in the Lord . . . I love when an online post of someone from the past makes me smile, because they’re living for the Lord. I thought about the richness I have, because of my family. God blessed me with a great . . .no, the best wife ever . . . and a priceless family. I am rich!
That being said, all of the times I’ve sung along with the Imperials, I don’t know if I ever stopped to picture what those words from the Bible really looked like. “Give, and it will be given to you. (How will it be given? In) GOOD MEASURE, PRESSED DOWN, SHAKEN TOGETHER, RUNNING OVER, will be put into your lap. That’s a pretty packed basket of grain!
As I’ve taken the time to watch the pressing going on in my life . . . and then the shaking take place, to have the individual pieces of grain fit closer, to make room for a little more only to find that it’s still over the top . . . and running over. Well I’d say that is a “good measure!” I’ve had a very fulfilled life in Christ . . . And there’s more to come . . . when I breathe my last here. How good is that? (Funny, both times as I was typing the word “good” I didn’t intend to, but I left out an “o”. Funny but the reality is what that omission says, . . . it’s not, how “good” is that, but rather, How “God” is that?!). It’s all about God’s goodness!
I am fighting the urge to write of another memory I had. Because I don’t want it to bring hurt to those it’s close to. I’ll only say that, at death’s door, it’s so sad to see what a full life of things without God in the center leads to. The image of that emptiness is heartbreaking.
Lord help me to see others as you see them. Help me to value what You value. Help me to spend my life on what You offer: Good measure, presses down, shaken together flowing over . . . You have come that we might have life and have it abundantly! That’s found only in a life lived fully for Jesus. And then . . . beyond that . . . there’s eternity to come! All I can say is wow!
Luke 6: 37 “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven; 38 give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.” (biblegateway.com, ESV)
More than just a BELIEVER in God, I need to be a FOLLOWER of Jesus!