Archive

Posts Tagged ‘reaping’

The Law of Return

February 13th, 2018

Life is reciprocal.

He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.”

Proverbs 11:25 NIV.

 My thoughts and comments today are about, “the law of return.”

Life is not random, even though it occasionally appears to be. Life is reciprocal. It is important that you understand, “The Law of Return.” The principle is rather simple, but applies either positively or negatively. “One man gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty. A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed . . He who seeks good finds goodwill, but evil comes to him who searches for it.” Proverbs 11:24-27 NIV. What is not to understand? God’s heart and desire were clear to the Apostle John, “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.” 3 John 2 NKJV. God’s promises are fulfilled within the measure of your obedience.

Let me state the principle simply and in a practical way. You get what you give, not what you want or demand. What you do not give first you will not receive except as charity, however much you expect or insist otherwise. When you do the right things in the right way, the Creator’s loving touch and generosity can be seen everywhere. In far more instances than the exceptions, good things happen to people who do good things for others. That is the principle of sowing and reaping.

Good deeds reproduce good deeds. Good will responds to good will. Kind words are the response from kind words. Generosity creates gratitude. Conversely, inappropriate actions or unworthy attitudes result in a similar return. Be an example, a good one. Whatever you expect of others, demand even more of yourself. You are wise to heed the warning of God’s Word, “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Matthew 7:1-2 NIV.

Life is not as you deem it to be, or wish that it were. Life is established on God’s terms, and works accordingly. You might muscle your will and way for a while, but inevitably and ultimately life works the way the Creator determined it should. As in the beginning, God has spoken over His creation, “Let there be, and there was.” That authority has not been revoked, nor will it be. God established eternal laws and principles by which His world works.

Foolishly and to minimal or temporary effect, you and I may try to force life to work the way we would prefer, but all efforts which are contrary to His Word, will, and wisdom, are eventually to little avail. Your lasting success, enduring satisfaction, and eternal reward depend on your learning God’s ways and cooperating with those. Isaiah was clear when He echoed God’s declaration, “’For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,’ says the Lord. ‘For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways..’” Isaiah 55:8-9 NKJV. It is foolish pride to think that any of us are wiser than God, even in the matters of our own daily life.

Jesus stated the truth simply, practically, and clearly. “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 7:12 NIV. That has often been referred to as the Golden Rule. The principle of return works for your good or to your loss, depending on how you choose to cooperate with its practical truth. “In the morning sow your seed, And in the evening do not withhold your hand; For you do not know which will prosper, Either this or that, Or whether both alike will be good.” Ecclesiastes 11:6 NKJV.

And Jesus identifies Himself with others,“Whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for Me.” Matthew 25:45 NIV. Our regard, or lack of regard, for others impacts what God is able to do for us. That too is the Law of Return. God’s Word is true and His provision is unfailing, “If you give, you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full measure, pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, and running over. Whatever measure you use in giving – large or small – it will be used to measure what is given back to you.” Luke 6:38 NLT.

My prayer for you and those who follow your example is, “May the Lord give you increase more and more, you and your children. May you be blessed by the Lord.” Psalm 115:14-15 NKJV.

Today, I pray for your life to abound with God’s grace and benevolence.

Christian Communications 2018

Website and archives: allenrandolph.com

facebook.com/everydaylife.allenrandolph

Devotionals , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

An Abounding Life

September 9th, 2016

EDL sowing and reaaping                  

Whatever good toward God or man will be returned from God’s own hand.

“Whatever good anyone does, he will receive the same from the Lord.” Ephesians 6:8 NKJV.

 

 

My thoughts and comments today are about “an abounding life.”

There is a simple lesson in life. What you do and say, whether good or bad, eventually comes back to you in some form of either kindness or distress. Because you feel like speaking or behaving in a certain way does not mean that you should. When you give and what you give determine what you will receive. Therefore, it would only be wise to consider carefully the effect of what you do or say before doing so.

Solomon wisely observed, “Your reward depends on what you say and what you do; you will get what you deserve.” Proverbs 12:14 TEV. Now that can be either encouraging or terrifying. It’s great to know that God rewards goodness; It is not so comforting to realize that He does not spare you the bitter fruit of wrongdoing. The Bible calls that sowing and reaping: “For he who sows to the flesh will of the flesh reap corruption. He who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.” Galatians 6:7-10 NKJV. Whenever you are not reaping enough, you are not sowing enough. 2 Corinthians 9:6-11 NIV.

As a child, I remember my grandfather McGinness saying, “God will be no man’s debtor.” I have come to understand what he meant by that. A simple rhyme comes to mind: “Whatever good toward God or man, will be returned from God’s own hand.” My grandfather had learned that whatever good is done, toward God or man, will be returned with added blessing from God, in one way or another at one time or another. God lets no good go unrewarded, however unnoticed by others. Your return may not always come from an expected source, but your reward always comes from the true Source of all that is good. God uses whom He chooses to do His work.

Here’s the practical lesson in this. Never hesitate to do what is right or to deal generously when you can; those opportunities come your way with God’s promise of blessing and enrichment. Conversely, never do what you know is wrong, nor withhold what you know is due, however small or secret that may at first appear. Solomon was specific. “Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is the power of your hand to do so.” Proverbs 3:27 NLT. There is a moral law. Good comes from the good you do or the grace God gives.

You can count this to be true, “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does.” Ephesians 6:7-8 NKJV. You may not realize the connection with a previous occasion at that moment, but God does, and remembers and rewards accordingly.

Today, I pray for you to do good freely and receive reward extravagantly.

———————————————————-

You may be receiving “Abounding Life” twice, we were notified that the majority of readers did not receive this devotional because of a server error. We want to provide this devotional for those who did not receive it. We apologize for that. Know that much time and effort has been invested in rectifying this technical problem. We trust the error has been corrected. And watch your Monday email for my thoughts on, “Living Passionately.” Spiritual life weakens when passion lessens.

Christian Communications 2016

Facebook.com/everydaylife.allenrandolph

Devotionals , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Joy of Generosity

February 17th, 2015

”He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.” Proverbs 11:25 NIV.

Generosity blesses the recipient and enriches the giver.

My thoughts and comments today are about “the joy of generosity.”

EDL pix generositySome years ago my friend, Harold, piqued my interest with these words, “What you make happen for others, God will make happen for you.” That is a Biblical principle affirmed in both Old and New Testaments. If you need encouragement, find others to encourage. If you need friendship, be a friend to those who need a friend. There is always someone whose need is greater than yours. Give out of your own need until you can give out of your surplus. “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does.” Ephesian 6:8 NIV. Be the one who meets the needs of others, and God will be the One who meets yours.

Those times when your generosity seems not to be noticed or reciprocated, remember your reward comes from God, not man. And God keeps immaculate records. “God is not unjust; He will not forget your work and the love you have shown Him as you have helped His people and continue to help them.” Hebrews 6:10 NIV. I remember my grandfather saying, “God will be no man’s debtor.” God counts every benevolence as generosity toward Him. Jesus described a day when everyone will stand before God as their generosity or lack thereof is reviewed. “Come you who are blessed by My Father . . Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.” Read Matthew 25:31-41 NIV.

Know this; liberality enriches you, leaving you with more not less. Generosity blesses the recipient and enriches the giver. “One man gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty. A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.” Proverbs 11:24-25 NIV. You may think that you cannot afford to be generous; the truth is that you cannot afford to not be generous. “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.” Luke 6:38 NIV. Generosity opens your life to the abundance of God while enriching the lives of others. I suggest that some measure of a person’s lack may even be the result of how little they give, rather than how little they have. “Remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.'” Acts 20:35.

Liberality is a lifestyle issue. “As you abound in everything – in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all diligence, and in your love for us – see that you abound in this grace (of giving) also.” 2 Corinthians 8:7. Generosity is not only about money and things, it is about a lifestyle of generosity – in your words to and about others, offering encouragement, being positive, and giving praise – in a lifestyle of unrestrained expression for others’ kindness – by consideration and thoughtfulness where it would not be expected – in helpfulness through giving your time or lending a helping hand – and by tolerance and forgiveness for others’ shortcomings.

“Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously . . for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work . . so that you can be generous on every occasion.” Read 2 Corinthians 9:6-11 NIV. See Galatians 6:7-10 NIV. In the time of harvest the work and weariness of sowing is never regretted.

Today, my prayer for you is that what you make happen for others, God will make happen for you.

Christian Communications, Inc.

(Bible verses are NKJV unless noted)

Devotionals , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Living Generously

August 2nd, 2013

“For God loves the person who gives cheerfully.” 2 Corinthians 9:7 NLT

Generosity resides in a heart that values people more than possessions.

My thoughts and comments today are about “living generously.”

Generosity is more an attitude than your financial ability. It is about sharing what you have generously and happily because you can bless someone. It is not primarily about dollars; it is a matter of the heart. And generosity is wonderfully double-edged, blessing the person who gives as well as the person who receives. Jesus taught, “Give, and it shall 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.” Luke 6:38 NIV. The specific context of this verse is about judgment and forgiveness, but the principle embraces giving and receiving, whatever the particular currency of exchange.

First, be generous with God. Giving is about planting a seed and planning on a harvest. God is the only one who can promise you a harvest, so that would be the best place to begin. Remember it is God who provided your seed. “Honor the Lord with your wealth, and from the first of all your produce; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.” Proverbs 3:9-10. A tithe is elementary, the minimum of giving. Read Malachi 3:10. Generosity only begins with a tithe, not ends there. Some people feel that they cannot afford to tithe; I don’t see how you can afford not to do so. “Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously . . For God loves the person who gives cheerfully.” See 2 Corinthians 9:6-11 NIV.

Secondly, be generous with yourself. By that I mean save and invest something for your future, out of what God provides you. No farmer eats or sells all he harvests. Some of a previous harvest is always kept as seed for a future harvest. You should do the same. A goal would be 10%, but start with at least something regularly however small that might seem now. The financial principle of compounding causes even a little to multiply over a long time, more than you might realize.

Then, be generous with others. An elementary aspect to generosity is paying your financial obligations to others in a timely manner,as you promised. It is not appropriate to owe someone yet continue building debt complicating your ability to repay the first creditor, or lavishing money on yourself without faithfully dealing with the debts you owe.

Secondly, generosity is helping others in practical and tangible ways when you see the opportunity and feel directed to do so. “A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.” Proverbs 11:25 NIV. Look for occasions when what you have: money, resources, and connections, and what you can do: talents, skills, and abilities can ease the burden and circumstance of another.

Generosity resides in a heart that values people more than possessions; it does not require wealth. Generosity is a lifestyle that you choose, rather than an obligation or occasional occurrence. Generosity is a deliberate decision you make about your stewardship of things with which you have been entrusted, neither whimsical nor subject to emotion or mood of the moment. Read 1 Timothy 6:18-19 NKJV.

My prayer for you this day is that you live each day generously.

Devotionals , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Choices Have Consequence

March 13th, 2012

“Don’t be misled . . you will always reap what you sow.” Galatians 6:7 NLT

“Choose well and wisely what you want to reap before you sow, not after.”

My thoughts and comments today are that “choices have consequence.”

Life presents you with choices; choices have consequence. Your choices determine either reward or loss; they always affect you and sometimes include others, whether intentionally or not. It is this simple. Do what is right and wise and reward comes your way, as well as blessing upon others. Choices from selfish insistence can have collateral damage beyond what you anticipate. The moral of this principle is: choose carefully and prayerfully, making corrections quickly when needed.

Wrong choices will be made, some out of ignorance and some of stubborn self-will. When you make a wrong decision and recognize it as such, correct your decision as quickly and honestly as you can. Doing so minimizes the effect and reduces the reach of an unwise choice.

The Bible teaches a “law of reaping and sowing” that is as old as creation. When God created the world, He established a principle that “seeds will produce the kinds of plants and trees from which they came. And so it was . .their seeds produced plants and trees of like kind. And God saw that it was good.” Genesis 1:11-12 NLT. An apple seed will produce an apple, which reliably will reproduce apple seeds! Choose well and wisely what you want to reap before you sow, not after. All the hope or regret in the world will not change the result from the seed you choose to plant. Seeds when sown can only produce what is their nature to produce, nothing more, nothing less!

Wrong choices result in negative consequences; Godly choices create positive results. “Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful desires will harvest the consequences of decay and death. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. So don’t get tired of doing good.” Galatians 6:8-9 NLT. God as faithfully rewards righteousness for “those who live to please the Spirit,” as He punishes unrighteousness justly for “those who live to satisfy sinful desires.”

The Bible warns, “Don’t be misled. Remember that you can’t ignore God and get away with it. You will always reap what you sow . . don’t get discouraged and give up, for we will reap a harvest of blessing at the appropriate time.” Galatians 6:7/9-10 NLT. This principle is not only with negative effect; it will work powerfully for you with positive force.

When I was young, I was warned about the foolishness of “sowing wild oats,” and the folly of then “praying for a crop failure.” Have you ever done that? You knew you shouldn’t, but you did anyway. In doing so, some folk, both young and old, have had to learn the hard way. Justice delayed is never wrong indulged nor right forgotten. Solomon learned from the pain of such an experience, writing, “Because the sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.” Ecclesiastes 8:11 NKJV. When the inevitable occurs, every person hopes to avert the reality.

Be encouraged; sin and wrong do not have to be fatal unless you allow them to become final. Sometimes people are too late smart, as was Esau who “found no place for repentance, though he sought it diligently with tears.” Read Hebrews 12:14-17 NKJV. However, there is grace and forgiveness, “For all have sinned; all fall short of God’s glorious standard . . The Lord is patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” Read Romans 3:23-26 NLT/2 Peter 3:9-14 NIV.

My prayer for you today is that you remedy wrongs by sincere repentance, confession, and real change.

Devotionals , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,