Read |Proverbs 11:24|
Words are lovely, weighty and powerful in their capacity to shape the landscapes of our lives and that of those around us. With a word you can lift a spirit, and with the same mouth a word may be uttered that completely crushes a spirit. But, as influential as our words may be, they do not operate in isolation. A series of nonverbal cues converge to provide a context to support others in interpreting the alignment between our utterances and our heart. Our hands are great assets in providing such context. A clenched fist signals frustration, anger, a forced and fleeting constraint. Whereas, an open hand gestures invitation: an invitation to give and to receive. Proverbs 11: 24 (CSB) reads, "One person gives freely, yet gains more; another withholds what is right, only to become poor." Here, it is clear that the blessing of addition is granted to the one who gives freely--the one who opens her hand. Whereas, the curse of subtraction hovers over the life of the one who withholds what is right to give. I will take for granted that we all desire to be counted amongst those who are increased, and to stay clear of the path that leads to poverty. So, what is it that allows for one to give freely? How can we know what is right to give? How is it, that in freely giving more is added?
John 8:32 (CSB) reads, "You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” Free to live the blessed, more abundant and generous life we have been invited to in Jesus Christ (John 10:10). What truth is available to us to make us free to give?
How can we know what is right to give? We know what is right to give because it is the same as what we have first received:
6. It is right to give hope, for Jesus Christ has given us a hope that shall
not disappoint (Romans 5:5).
And in all our giving, we are inviting others into the day-to-day lived experience of relationship with our most generous God and Father.
He pours in, we pour out. And with our emptying, is made room for His filling. We will never be able to place such a demand on His goodness that we are left wanting. Every extension of an open hand we make to a thirsty and hungry world, is honored by new mercies (Lamentations 3: 22 - 23). So when we feel like there is no more to give, we will give by faith. We will let what we know to be true of our God set the standard, knowing that He will never disappoint us.
Let this prayer, in song, also be your declaration this week:
Carolyn Sinclair McCalla is a daughter of God, with a passion for encouraging women to embrace the fullness of God's love for them in Jesus Christ. She leads the Be-Held Community: a group of women seeking, living and being transformed by the truth of God’s Word together.