Give and it will be given to you.
"Here." Trey handed her a dozen eggs. "Oh no!" he protested, when she tried to give him some money, "we don't take money from family."
"Take the money," she insisted. "It's for your bank account. I need to pay you!"
He shook his head and stepped back, hands at his sides. "No thank you."
As they left, Trey's face was a study in mixed emotions. We had explained to him that we didn't always take money when we gave food away. Sometimes, like today, we shared with people simply as a way of saying thank you, or to recognize the special friendship we had.
But he wanted his money, we could see that. And while we tried to explain to him in words the value of generosity and giving, God had a better idea.
Later on that night, I went up to help him collect the eggs. "Look Trey!" I showed him the basket of eggs. "In this basket is almost exactly what you gave our friends, that, plus the money I shared with you this afternoon, is more than TWICE what you would have gotten for the eggs! This is how God rewards us when we are generous - by giving back to us with the same measure of how we gave!" (I had felt led, earlier that afternoon, to share some money with Trey, the money he would have gotten from selling the eggs. I had no idea there were so many eggs in the hen house. So in fact, God had given Trey TWICE what he had shared.)
Sometimes, we adults need that reminder as well. We struggle to share what we have when it seems like we barely have enough. We balk at inviting friends over for a meal when their house is so much nicer (in our eyes) than theirs. We stick with the people, places and charities we know and are familiar with, rather than stretch out of our comfort zone and invite that neighbor over for coffee, or share part of a windfall with a local non-profit.
My experience is that over and over, each time I am generous with what God has blessed me with, he returns it - over and above. And I want Trey to experience that as well. So we give away eggs and food and time and hospitality. And someday, when it really counts, Trey won't hesitate, and God will bless him.
He'll bless you too, you know. Feel like there is never enough? Give it away. God promises that he'll give it back, pressed down and running over.
"We want to live well, but our foremost efforts should be to help others live well."
(1 Corinthians 10:24b MSG)