Monday, April 4, 2016
But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Matthew 6:3(NLT)
For several years the strangest thing happened at our mailbox; I was meeting God there. Now, I’m not Moses, and my mailbox never caught on fire, but nonetheless, there is holy ground at the post box marked “167 Cedar Circle”.
It started in 2000 when we moved to Thomasville. The envelope containing cash was postmarked Jacksonville, Florida. It was addressed to Elizabeth and me…and the return address was ours too! Now, I’m a bit off-center at times, but I very rarely send myself money in an unsigned letter.
Over the first three years we would get an envelope like that once in a while. The pattern never changed; it was always an unsigned paper with no message, wrapped around twenty dollar bills in a legal envelope, with addressee and addressor the same.
Then, it stopped. As suddenly and mysteriously as it began, our benefactor ceased this clandestine charity. We heard nothing for about two years. Then, in 2005 it started again. This time, however, the envelopes contained greater amounts.
For five years those envelopes were a great help. A few times they were the difference between, well, eating and dieting!
In all we have seen an incredible display of generosity on the part of some dear one who took Matthew 6:3 literally!
Of course, the secretive manner of our blessing caused us to wonder just who it was that had been blessing us. There were times I felt like the rich atheist at Thanksgiving time – all sorts of blessings, and no one to thank!
The whole matter reminded me of the gift of Christ through Mary, and her puzzlement about why, how, when, where….all that stuff she treasured-up in her heart, pondering.
I often wondered “why us”?
We could spend a year talking about what these well-timed gifts have meant to us financially, but whomever the Lord moved to do this unselfish blessing must know that, for us, the spiritual encouragement has been greater than the monetary boost.
Some Lessons I’ve Learned About Blessings
· I have been taught by this generosity that you cannot give in a way that begins to match God’s grace. Like the gifts Elizabeth and I have received, God’s best comes undeserved, and mostly unasked-for; He blesses whom He will bless, and He does it with impeccably great timing! We are humbled by His great love and care.
· I have learned to thank God…There are blessings which God schedules so that there is no human explanation…it can only be His hand, His miracle, and we must therefore thank Him…because there’s no-one else to thank. He did it that way two thousand years ago, at a manger; He can do it at a mailbox…mine or yours.
God has blessed us in many more ways than our trips to the mailbox; however, these stand out in my mind as God’s encouragement to a sometimes discouraged man.
Isn’t that always His way?
Thank God for this gift too wonderful for words! 2 Corinthians 9:15(NLT)
In God’s economy there are times when you will receive, and at other times God wants you to be the giver.
But, unlike the “bug and windshield” where sometimes you are one, and sometimes the other; when it comes to giving God’s way, you’re always both. You can never give without receiving – if you don’t let your left hand know what the right is doing.