Giving and Receiving – Ag in the Bible
Recently things have been tight. We continue marketing efforts, we continue inching forward and we continue honing lessons that will one day come forward to clinics and retreats. If someone needs change, it’s not difficult to give.
So normally I have an idea when we go for groceries – if I have $40 or $60 I can get pretty close to that limit without going over. Recently due to the tight week that limit was $15. Now we’ve got enough meats stocked up for the week (suffice to say it’s 3-4 ounce servings not just meat!). A few things to go with it, besides rice and pasta, would be good. We have, of course, eggs and some things from the garden.
So I went in for some potatoes, onions, a few staples and on $15 you can guess it’s very few. Well, the cashier rung up $16 and change before the toilet paper. I stopped her and apologized, saying I’d have to take the onions off as I just had $15. The two ladies behind me in line, bless them, covered the dollar and change, some 16 cents.
Now how many people throw away a dollar? Oh maybe not the paper but purchasing what isn’t really needed? One of the ladies was a senior, and I know money is tight for many seniors today, so that was especially touching – and neither would be discouraged. How much difference can we make if we all reached out with that dollar? That $5 for a fast food meal? The change for a veteran’s outreach?
Now we could do without onions for the week, or for a few days. It’s not life altering. We wouldn’t go hungry if we didn’t have onions with the meal. Onions are, however, a nutritious and tasty addition. So these two ladies – I don’t know their names – who were shopping yesterday morning at the Jasper, Alabama Save-A-Lot – repeated thank yous just aren’t enough.
Let’s pass this on. Remember His words in Matthew:
31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’
44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’
You see, these ladies didn’t do it for attention, but from the heart. It wasn’t in a crowd to take credit for doing good things. It was in a small grocery store in a small Alabama town.
And these things happen everywhere. What if instead of the gossip and hate, what if a dollar campaign took hold? Use $1-2 per day to do something nice for someone.
It reminds me of some time ago being in the Dollar Tree – someone walked up to Connor (who was shopping a short distance away from me) and gave him $1. Said that she wanted to do something randomly nice for someone so gave him $1 and said have a great day. Random indeed. And the result – he wanted to take $5 and do the same thing!
Take a couple dollars next time you’re out and about and look for someone to bless with it. We can’t all help with large amounts, but most can help with small amounts. Maybe it’s $1-2, maybe it’s a meal for someone in need, maybe it’s a basket of school supplies for a family struggling to get theirs. Look around – find someone to bless then *do it!*
It blesses both.