This morning I was WIDE AWAKE at 3:30 AM, apparently my body did not get the memo that time change had indeed happened and I had an extra hour of sleep, so I decided to get an early jump on the day and get some work done while listening to a Joyce Meyers sermon. (UNRELATED TO THE BLOG SIDENOTE HERE) Now I know that several of you that read my blog are not fans of Joyce Meyers and we've had this conversation before, but I'll just put it out there publicly. I listen to Joyce Meyers, read John Piper, thoroughly enjoy Matt Chandler, study Mother Theresa, my heroes are Corrie Ten Boom and Maria W. Etter, I'm amazed by Lester Sumerall, read John Hagee's end time studies, would go to Bill Johnson's school of the supernatural, frequent International House of Prayer in KC, regularly do Beth Moore devotionals, inspired by Brother Lawerence... etc. the list goes on. Hopefully you see a common thread here. I don't think anyone is perfect and I don't agree with everything I read, listen to, or study, but I believe in eating hay and spitting out the sticks. So that being said, I think that Joyce Meyers has great wisdom to share despite what you may think about her personally.
Joyce this morning was discussing Matthew 7:12 "So in everything do unto others as you'd have them do to you" She was explaining that at one point she had tried to increase her giving to others. She would take things out of her closet and give them away often. Then one day she says God said to her "Why do you act like you're such a great giver because you grab things out of the closet that you're never planning on wearing again and you give them away... they're doing you a favor taking it off your hands" Then Joyce said God asked her to give away a brand new dress she'd just bought and she says "That can't be God that DRESS IS NEW"
I'll admit I laughed out loud as I thought OUCH!! I was taught a few years ago that when I get something new I need to give something away. A few weeks ago I went and spent a day getting me new clothes, before I left for the trip I filled up two bags of old clothes to give away. I think that is an awesome way to live, but wow what a step even higher to say give away something that YOU WOULD WANT TO GET. Don't just give away things that you don't want and get this pride that says you've accomplished the title of ultimate giver.
There is a lot to be said about do unto others as you would have them do unto you in areas of respect, emotions, tangible items, attitude, etc. Specifically in the area of physical needs God set up an awesome system of sowing and reaping. Luke 6:38 says that with what measure you give, that measure will be given back to you. In other words to receive what you need, you have to give what you need, as freely as you give you'll receive, etc. Sowing and reaping is evident from the OT to the NT and it is consistent with do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
This morning Joyce made me examine myself. I am a pretty low maintenance gal. I would consider myself a giver, but it's time to step it up. To really examine what I give, to who I give, how I give, do I give to others the things I'd want given to myself. Am I willing to take out the new dress out of the closet and freely give? Would I give away a book I just bought before I get to read it? How about a few of the things that I worked for to save money and buy or things I really enjoy and use daily... my new car, iphone, macbook pro, africa bag, new bible, nikon dslr, perfect fitting v-necks or buckle jeans (go ahead make fun of me for that) etc. I'll stop here because I already realize how spoiled I am.
If there is anything I'm not willing to give away when God asks me to then I don't need it. What a thought.
Be Blessed, J. Tate