by Beth Groff
The Word in Scripture
A generous person will prosper; those who refresh others will be refreshed. Proverbs 11:25
No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden, or under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light. Luke 11:33
I recently read about the two main seas in the Holy Land. The northern sea, the Sea of Galilee, is beautiful and vibrant. Fed by the Jordan River, it waters fertile valleys, helping to produce fruits and vegetables. In its depths, fishermen find sustenance and profit. This is the sea that Jesus loved. On its banks He taught parables, spent many nights and worked miracles of love and compassion.
The southern sea, further down the Jordan River, differs greatly from Galilee. Its surface is 430 meters below sea level with water almost 10 times as salty as the ocean. No animals drink from its waters. Its name reveals its nature: The Dead Sea.
Both seas are fed by the same river. So why is there such a difference? The Dead Sea has an inlet to receive the fresh waters, but no outlet to send them on. The fresh waters flow in … only to stagnate.
Through generosity we are not diminished but are replenished. In serving others we gain more than we give, allowing us to be as healthy and joyous as God wants us to be. At Central our focus on mission and service has given me so much – a sense of shared purpose and commitment, nurturing friendships, life lessons for my children, family memories. As we help others, we too are helped.
God, thank you for the gift of service to others. Remind us in our busy lives that even small gestures and moments of giving can have great impact. When we allow your love to flow through us to others, thank you for the love we receive in return. Amen.
A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle. James Keller
Take a moment to think of a small act of generosity you can do this week. Reflect on what you might gain from that gift to someone else.