By Dannah Gresh, founder of True Girl
Well, that was the longest Spring break . . .ever! #ThankYouCoronavirus
Though it looks different from city to city, kids are finally back to school!
Mom, you made it.
You stocked the pantry, learned more about aerosols than they teach in medical school, perfected the fashion of mask-wearing, and hunkered down at home. I bet your homeschool even hosted Spirit Week starting with Meltdown Monday!
If you’re like me…life looks a little…well . . . messy!
I believe we need to look at EVERYTHING through the lens of God’s Truth, including how busy and complicated life has been. For some reason---when I thought of how much we’ve packed into this year and how messy it's been--- my mind was drawn to this verse.
“Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6:38
Now, before we go any further: let me get on my soap box labelled “Bible verses taken out of context!” This verse wins a blue ribbon. Preachers who need money like to make it about filling the offering plate. But Jesus wasn’t talking about money.
Another thing I’ve seen is people using it to talk about time. At a Christian camp I actually heard a speaker read this verse, get out a bag of potato chips, open it, squished them all so there was even more air in the bag than they sell to us…and filled it with bag after bag after bag of squashed up chips. To say this is how we need to use our time. Wrong! Jesus wasn’t talking about our time.
(For the record---I never understood the potato chip thing, but the crushed and messy thing…I get. So I now call this my potato chip verse.)
Why…out of no where—would Jesus change the subject and start talking about giving money and time away? He wouldn’t. He didn’t. Let’s read what’s around Luke 6:38 to get the context right.
Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6:36-42
Now, that we’ve placed this verse in its proper context, we can talk about what this Scripture can teach us. If we took the potato chip verse out of the mix, there would be no question what this piece of the Bible is really about: forgiveness. And that's something we need an extra measure of when our lives are messy!
Let me encourage you: Don’t judge the woman next to you. Be merciful to the mom who’s made a different school choice, mask choice, political party choice than you! You don’t know their story! Give your homeschooling kids a big break from picture perfect living. Jesus encouraged us to give forgiveness and mercy out in great measure! And when we do…he pours it generously on us.
Let me ask you to be honest. Have you been full of judgement? Are you giving a best friend the silent treatment because she let you down when she kept her kid home from school? Is your social media feed full of your opinion and are the comments you leave on the opinions of others harsh? Is your fuse short because your teenager's homeschool habits include leaving their dishes on the coffee table!
You do have the right and sometimes the need to share your thoughts, but let's be careful how we do it. And let’s pour out GENEROUS amounts of forgiveness, and mercy right now. No one’s getting it 100% right these days. Life is messy.
Truth Bomb Action Point: First take a moment to talk to God about anyone you need to forgive. Then, do it. If your relationship is strong, have a conversation. But if it's not, you might just need to let this be between you and God until the right moment presents itself.
Next, send a text or make a call to ask for forgiveness from anyone who God's Spirit brings to your mind.
Our True Girl theme verse:
"So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31,32
Mom, the best way to teach your daughter to live like an authentic True Girl is to live like an authentic True Woman. And to do that, you've got to get your life lined up with the Truth of the Bible. Listen to Dannah Gresh every weekday on Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth's Revive Our Hearts podcast. The program features biblical teaching, interviews that offer godly advice, and other opportunities to abide in God's Word.
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