Monday, December 7, 2009

giving...and recieving...

I've always loved the scripture in Luke 6:38 that reads:

"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."

Who doesn't like the idea of something "pressed down shaken together and running over."

Of course the key here the first part, "give."  Giving isn't always easy.  True giving is giving when it isn't easy, giving should count.

There are some areas of life that I have no trouble giving.  I will easily give of my time.  Watching other children, listening, doing favors, running errands.

Honestly however, things worth money aren't as easy for me.  We don't have much "spending money" in our budget.  We can buy what we need and certainly we do spend money on extracurricular stuff.  But I rarely go out and spend $20 or $40 just because I like a clothing item or impulse buy something.  I've been procrastinating buying a crockpot for about three months now because it's not a "must have".

Bean manages our money, which is perfectly fine with me.  Being in accounting, he has a particular way of doing things and approach to finances.  When we were first married, it was quickly clear that we wouldn't see eye to eye on how to handle things, so it was better to let him do his thing.  He does a great job.  Bills are always paid and needs are always met.  Let me be clear that ANY time I have expressed a need, and sometimes even a want to him, he always finds a way to make the money available.  He doesn't like saying no to me.  And I don't want to take advantage of that.

When I discovered craigslist, ebay & resale stores, it was a beautiful thing.  A way to take items we no longer needed and turn them into a little cash.  Cash that was usually mine to decide what to do with it.  I could sell old clothes I didn't wear, and buy a few new items.  I could upgrade or change things I was using with the kids.  My own little spending stash.  I'm talking like $20 at a time though--no big bills usually!!  Plus I love saving money on buying used things and making money on things we no longer need.

This means I often eye things as potential sales and potential cash.  I will have items sitting around for months with the intention to try to sell them, before I ever get around to actually listing them somewhere.  But I don't want to get rid of it because just maybe it will earn me $5 or $10.  I know it sounds a little greedy, and I'll admit perhaps it is.  But also trying to be a good steward of our money and posessions.

Lately though, I've had the opportunity to gift various items to friends and family.  Items that maybe would have fetched a few dollars, but I found that gifting them meant far more.  Maternity clothes, baby clothes and similar items.

When I won a contest and recieved a prize of wonderful baby products, I couldn't use them all.  So, slowly I've been gifting them out to family and friends.  I'll admit, at times I've checked on ebay or craigslist, to see what they might fetch, but I found that what I got for giving them away was worth more.

A sling to my sister-in-law; baby shoes to my other sister-in-law; a fabulous large designer diaper bag to my friend expecting twins; baby clothes to a friend unexpectedly starting her family; a Moses basket to a high school friend I reconnected with on Facebook and a few more things I have plans to dole out.

And guess what, scripture is right!  I love when I get great reminders of the truth of God's Word.

I've been recieving back what I've given, pressed down, shaken together and running over.

Last week my friend alerted me to the fact that I had won a blog giveaway--which she had urged me to enter.  We weren't quite sure what the prize was, but since this was the designer of the fabric for my crib bedding, we thought it would be fun.  Although sewing is an interest of mine, I don't really have time for it.  So I'll probably be gifting much of this prize to my same friend and maybe we'll do a sewing project together.

And then a few days later, I blogged about the fullness of my life and I got a comment from one of my favorite bloggers that I had won HER giveaway for Red Envelope.  It makes me feel a bit like a D-List blogging celebrity, when I find out that an A-list blogger has visited my blog and commented!  So Stephanie's visit, and my win were wonderful.

Then...my friend from church came  by to add to the stuff she had given me at church the night before...clothes and shoes for Gracie, DVD's and a red Elmo chair which has been a hit in our house.

A few hours later that same day, I hopped on craigslist and did my search for "Maclaren", that I do several times a week, looking for a stroller I can afford.  I've been wanting a Maclaren for several months...and then I began NEEDING one as our stroller was stolen off our front porch.  Well, I needed a stroller, and that was my top choice.  Those suckers are hard to find on craigslist, much less at an affordable price.  What do you know!  A single Maclaren popped up for $50, with a phone number.  I quickly called and set a time that evening to check it out.  And what do you know, the stroller was red!  And now it's mine! (In the 4 hours between when I called and bought the stroller, three others had called--but I was the first call.)

Pressed down, shaken together and truly running over.

Giving is the true blessing.  Recieving is like sprinkles on a cupcake.  They make it more fun and exciting, but aren't the true substance.

Yes, this is a season of giving.  But we should give year 'round.  What can you give? 

It's good to be a child of God.

2 comments:

  1. Love this post! I agree. It's great to give (and sometimes easier than actually going through the hassle of listing an item!).

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