Give and it will come back to you, good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over. – Luke 6:38
The Bible verse cited above is used quite often during church offertories to insight people to give. I think we hear it so often the potency within it is almost taken for granted; we hear the words but don’t apply the wisdom. Because of the economy, stinginess, or a simple lack of faith in the truth of the passage, we shirk off giving as if it’s beneath us yet we all desire to receive. I can honestly say I live by giving of myself. I may not always have the material means to donate thousands of dollars to a cause, but I have learned that I cannot beat God in giving.
Since starting my business, I have made it a practice of giving away some of my services to other business owners who may not be able to afford them or to charitable causes. Philanthropically this is called an “in-kind donation” but I like to think of it as a seed. Years ago I heard a pastor instruct the congregation not to eat our seed and if what we have is not enough for our harvest, it must be planted to reap more. It has been three years since I have been a full-time entrepreneur and I must say I have seen the miraculous right before my very eyes. In times when money was lean, I have given. This sounds contrary to fiscal responsibility but again, I knew that the money I had was not enough for my harvest, so I’ve made it my seed. In times when I had no money, I’ve sown my services. Some may say it’s selfish to give and expect something in return. I say it’s foolish not to trust God at His word. If He said it and it is a conditional principle, He cannot lie. Now when I have offered my coin or my creativity, I try to give it freely with no strings attached. When I have tried to tie strings to my giving, I’ve been so heart struck and convicted. You’re probably thinking this entire last passage is contradictory. It is not. See, I give to those who can’t offer me anything and I don’t expect anything from them. I expect to see God’s grace bring about my return.
I have seen money, resources and opportunities come to me that I know I had no hand in bringing to myself. Each time I am reminded of a seed I’ve sown or something I did for someone else selflessly. Consider the huge oak tree that sprouted from an acorn. Each time its season comes, it sheds millions more acorns to remind it from whence it came. This is how I intend to grow my business and nurture my life. Living in the overflow means not hoarding all that comes your way but spreading the wealth of talent and treasure that you have so that it consistently flows. It’s not yours to hoard anyway, it is all gifts from God. I have had to rebuke myself from feeling like I was being used by people or that I wasn’t appreciated. God reminded me of this just this week. Bishop T.D. Jakes said in his sermon “Destiny Has a Stalker”:
Within any area that you are exceptional, do not look for reciprocity. If you do then you will be wounded. People can only give what they have so most times you will not receive from people what you need on the level that you need it. Only God can meet your need.
Even when I was bankrupt I still gave and I have been living in the overflow ever since. I don’t write this to brag on myself because this isn’t about ME. It’s about having faith, being obedient and expecting great things from God because He cannot lie.
In what ways have you been living in the overflow? Share your testimony below. I’d love to hear about it and be encouraged as I attempt to encourage you.