“. . .what goodness the Lord shall do unto us, the same will we do unto you.”
Life is not for hoarding; it’s for sharing and giving.
A reservoir or a conduit? Which of these two better characterizes your life? One is a “holding tank,” while the other is a “clearinghouse.” One is for “hanging onto,” while the other is for a “giving unto.”
Like Job, we know we came “naked out of our mother’s womb and naked shall we leave this life” (Job 1:21a). And, we know there are times “the Lord gives” and times “the Lord takes away” (v.21b). The question is “Can we still say ‘Blessed be the Name of the Lord’?” (v.21c).
And, in the midst of it all do we remember “we’ve freely received” and are to also “freely give” (Mt. 10:8b)?
Simply put, are we more concerned about what we have or Whose we are and what He’s doing in/through us?
When Moses’ spoke today’s Manna to Hobab, his father-in-law and also known as Jethro and Ruel (Judg. 4:11; Ex. 3:1; 2:18), he was demonstrating great, gracious benevolence toward him. Moses invited him to accompany them to the place God had promised them, but Hobab refused (vv.29-30). That’s when Moses pleaded with him to stay—for he evidently knew that part of the wilderness very well (v.31)—and basically said “We’ll treat you the same way the Lord has treated us.”
And, Hobab went with him (v.33).
When others know we’re seeking the Lord (Mt. 6:33) and trying to live a W.W.J.D. (“what would Jesus do?”) life, they’re much more inclined to acquiesce to our requests. Why is that? Simply because they know we’ll “love/treat them as Christ has loved/treated us” (Jn. 13:34). And, isn’t that the true mark of a follower of Christ?
Most assuredly it is (Jn. 13:35).
That night in Simon the Pharisee’s house, when the “lady of the night” crashed the party, wept on Jesus’ feet and then dried His feet with her hair, our Lord used that incident as an opportunity to teach on forgiveness. He said “The one who loves much is one who’s been forgiven much; but, the one who forgives little is also one who loves little” (Lk. 7:47).
Thus, when we’re proud and feeling self-sufficient, we’ll also tend to be condescending and critical toward others. We’ll be quick to point out their faults and overlook their needs even as the rich man did poor Lazarus, “who was laid at his gate full of sores and begged for crumbs from his table” (Lk. 16:20-21).
But, the rich man, “who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day” (v.19), had no time in his schedule for such a wretched creature for he had no place in his heart for the One Who’d blessed him with everything he had. And, we should not be surprised what happened to him in death (vv.21-31)—for life is to be shared, not stored or squandered.
By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated December 3, 2010