Luke 6:38 (NIV) 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 want a good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over in our life? To give must mean that as I give financially that I can expect a return. Maybe. I believe that sowing and reaping applies to everything in our life. Living long enough to experience many seasons gives one great hindsight vision. I don’t know about you but my life has felt the pressure, shaking and running that is often associated with routine and responsibility. To God be all the glory as He has blessed our family every way possible, yet in my heart I know that there is more.
We will soon sell the house that our family has lived in for more than a decade. Our youngest daughter doesn’t remember life before it. It is filled with memories good and not so good. It is the shell of refuge where we have dwelled a long time. Labeled sanctuary many times, it is filled with the Holy Spirit because we ask Him to come in regularly and be our guest. We are settled here. (Sigh) I believe that we all would settle where we are building comfortable places and allowing complacency to fill us if the Lord would allow it. But those who seek to know the Lord, do His Will and experience His Glory live a life of being pressed and shaken. In 2 Corinthians 4:7-9, it reminds me that I am but a jar of clay filled with this treasure of God’s Power. I am hard pressed, but not crushed. I am perplexed but will not live in despair. I am persecuted but never abandoned. I will be struck down but not destroyed. This is the process of a good measure. Our lives pressed and shaken until God’s Glory spills out running into our lap.
Mark 4:24-25 (NIV) “Consider carefully what you hear,” he continued. “With the measure you use, it will be measured to you—and even more. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them.”
With the measure you use, it will be measured to you and even more. These words are important to those who want more out of life. We must decide what that “more” looks like and create clear objectives and goals to attain it. The earth provides opportunity to sow into the natural reproductive cycle of life. We have families. We are allowed to build finances. To commit ourselves to a better life here and now – limits one’s future and hope. The weighable substance of life in the Kingdom is faith. We must take the measure of faith (Romans 12:3) provided to us and sow it now.
We can make this life more comfortable or we can live as temporary residents now to bask in forever. We worry about what we wear on the outside rather than being clothed in righteousness on the inside. The accumulation of our life that matters to the Kingdom will never be according to the wealth of this world. However, God’s People often live below His Standards because they cannot let go of what they have to possess all He is. Faith is not just reserved for the impossible but gives us the opportunity to live according to God’s Glorious Standard once forsaken by sin. The more the pressure and shaking in our life, the more evident those things that are keeping us from fulfillment.
2 Peter 1:5-9 (NIV) For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.
Make every effort to add to your faith. Every effort put forth in the course of a day should be wrapped in faith pursuant to hope. Our life should be viewed through God’s Word for fulfillment. Each request brought boldly before His Throne before another. Before our foot falls that step considered according to the Way, the Truth and the Life that is given to us. We have His Spirit living inside of us. Is He a silent partner or closest friend? Salvation is when we turn to Jesus. Faith are the steps that form our following of Him. To call Him Lord yet still live according to selfish motivation and daily aspirations to have a better life places a limit that Christ never intended for His People to have. In fact, just before going to the Cross, Jesus prayed for us. His Disciples. His Followers. The believers who would live long after His Departure. He promised those who endured the pressure, shaking, and like would be given a full measure of joy in return. (John 17) God thoughts are always higher than our own and His Ways far exceeding. Faith is the only way to have the Promises of God through Jesus Christ. If there is no faith evident in our life, there is nothing of worth to increase.
The Word of God reads like a recipe. Take your faith and add some goodness to it. Fold that goodness into the Word of God which is knowledge until it becomes self-control. Allow self-control to sit and wait until it becomes perseverance. Now mix perseverance with some godliness until it produces love and mutual affection for everyone. God’s commodity in our life is His Love. We have faith because God loved us first and loves us best. To commit our life to faith is not necessarily to produce natural things or creature comforts but rather to increase our faith inside until the only thing we become desperate for is God alone.
Ephesians 3:16-21 (NIV) I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
As a believer, I have the Power of God working in my life to change me into the person that I was created to be. The operative power in my life is faith. It is the measureable substance that the Lord examines in me on a regular basis. He looks at my heart. He listens to what I say. The Lord weighs the Fruit of His Spirit to see if I am producing properly. All of these things lead to my fulfillment. However, rather than comparing my life to Jesus, I become distracted and begin looking around. This is dangerous because God’s Plan, His Future, His Hope and His Inheritance for my life doesn’t look like anyone else’s. If I begin to desire what others have, do or become, then I immediately begin to settle, compromise and all substitutions in my life. 2 Peter 1:9 comes with this warning, “But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.”
Luke 6:37 warns us not to judge, not to condemn, and to forgive. Leading into verse 38 which begins with the word “give”. It is human nature to be selfish. It is the character of God and Jesus Christ to give. We are called to be givers. I believe money is the easiest thing to contribute to the Kingdom and the least desired by God, maybe that is why the streets of Heaven are paved in pure gold. God wants us to have faith. Trusting Him for our life – all of it. However, when we read this verse in Luke 6, it is much easier to accept it as the giving of our personal wealth rather than the giving of our life to a higher standard. The Lord desires to open our eyes to the real value and worth of our life that only seems to come about when we are pressed or shaken. It causes us to reexamine the content of our life looking for faith. Faith is the only substance that makes hope possible. It is the commodity and currency of God’s Kingdom that leads to fullness and complete satisfaction.
“To know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” The Lord has a better way. Judgment is often born of comparison. We measure our life according to another which creates substandard expectation in our life. Our desire should be to be filled with the measure of all the fullness of God. To pursue Him with our whole life not just bits and pieces along the way. If we would take all the possibilities of our life including the probable and improbable and place it in His Capable Hands, faith will add to the substance of our life making what we hope for the impossible come to pass. Here’s the catch: God always does immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine. It is according to His Power at work in us which is represented by our faith in God alone. God wants to bless you more than you can ask or think. Are you limiting your life today? Perhaps if we dumped out our cup and allowed the Lord to fill us up, we would see that our life can be better and more satisfying than we ever thought possible In fact, the Lord guarantees it. Are you feeling pressure to give God your situation today? Do it. Are you experiencing some turbulence in life that has you all shaken up? No worries. God is just making room for more faith that will make all things possible.
Philippians 3:13-14 (NIV) Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.