“Freely you have received, freely give…”
The true art of life is generosity. To give freely of ourselves is the revelation of our Saviour. How freely, how undeservedly we have received of His great mercy. Shall not that heart transform us from the stinginess of giving things rather than ourselves? To give of our time, effort, and most importantly our heart to those around us is life. To live in the freedom of each moment is to give with no thought to our own resources or concerns. That is freedom. To seek out the true welfare of another soul at our expense is true life. Life does not consist in what one has, but in the ability to give to others what has been so freely given to us. The Body of Christ today is one of ours, mine, us and they. All of these things denote a wrong thinking, which of course produces wrong living. I hear the term “our church”, “our pastor”, and “we believe”… how it crushes the real heart of all that we have been called to. Paul called himself a “steward” of the grace of God. A steward is one who owns nothing, but simply manages the wealth of another. Truth, Life and Power are only such in the giving of them away, freely and without expectation of any return. The only Law which governs true generosity is the Law of His Love. Love is never impoverished, for of and in itself is the very treasure of God! Men who are always talking of their poverty have not touched the reality of His Love. Love is not aware of itself. It has no vested interest in its state or “feelings”. It gives because that is its very nature. It lives because that is its very nature. It defends not itself, holds on to nothing, and takes no account of its own resources. It is a life that lives in the sheer wonder of God’s Glory and resources. It is no wonder that the Eternal Son with great Joy beckons us to live and walk in the halls of His Father’s house.
In this house (not houses), the way in is freely given, the way to abide in its richness is to freely give. May we in this hour discover that we receive by giving, live by dying, overcome by loving. This is the doing, this is the living and this is the chief joy of life. As the prophet said to the impoverished woman, “what do you have…?” She replied, “I have a little oil…” To which the word of the Lord comes, “Go find empty vessels…” and the little oil flowed until all were filled! So is it with us; a little oil is sufficient for the empty vessels around us. But the oil does not multiply where it sits in faithless inactivity. It is in the giving, that we receive, it is in the pouring that its flow is known. This is the way of true enlargement in the things of our Father. The conduit is only rich because of the flow; it was never designed to hold anything. Its real purpose is to channel the wealth and life of another. No wonder that except we become as little children we cannot (will not) enter the Kingdom, for the simplicity of its expression requires a life of freedom and spontaneity.
May we in this day, in this moment grow in the wonder of this Heart and Life. As Children may we grow into His very likeness, into His very Heart, unto the Life and core of all that He is.
The tissue of the Life to be
We weave with colors all our own,
And in the field of Destiny
We reap as we have sown.
John Greenleaf Whittier (1807–1892)