I'm not so good at rote memorization, unless it's set to music. (The list of US Presidents set to the tune of Yankee Doodle Dandy was ingrained in my memory in grade school.) So today's Christmas Countdown task might not officially get checked off the list. I am not sure how good we will all be at memorizing “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).
But tonight after dinner, during our Advent wreath time, I read that Scripture to my family and I could hear the ghostly voice of my dad saying, "Don't measure other people by your yardstick." The ribbon of memory tied my past and my present together nicely.
For me, the main focus in this Scripture is the first word: give. That is the part I want to memorize this Christmas. I want to give and find joy in giving. Conversely, I want to be open to receiving too - not monetary or physical gifts, but gifts that God is placing in my life that might even be considered painful. The gift of knowing that even when I feel like an ugly duckling, I am beautiful in His eyes. The gift of gentle chiding when I get high on my horse with pride. The gift of gratitude when I come home to a place where I am listened to, missed when I'm gone, and - put simply - wanted. The gift of knowing that I am on the exact right path that I need to be on at exactly this moment. If there were any questions about that in my mind recently, they have been answered now.
And it's interesting: the emerging ability to open myself up and receive has compelled me to want to give even more. He is heaping and pouring blessings into my lap by the bucketful!
Here's #8 on our Countdown.