When he sent his followers out on a training mission, Jesus gave them these instructions: “As you go, preach this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven is near’. Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.”
Most of the time, when I read this passage, I am awed by all the things they were able to do. Healing people is mighty fine work!
Today I am challenged – ‘freely you have received, freely give’.
So, Jesus says that they have received healing and deliverance – and that they should extend it to others. Yet when I look inside the human heart (mine too), I find a tendency to withhold that from others. What if I give grace to someone and they aren’t nice back? What if …
There is a conduit of giving that starts with God and ends at the world. It can flow through you if you want it to – because of this statement – ‘freely you have received, freely give.’
Have you been hurt when you tried to give? Your tendency is to stop giving – but the grace isn’t yours to stop – freely you have received – it is free, others don’t pay for it by responding well.
Out of 10 lepers, only 1 returned with a thank you to Jesus. The guy that was healed at the pool told the Jewish leaders on Jesus. Giving freely means just that – not for repayment, but because it was freely given to you.
However, this too seems to be a spiritual principal – if you give freely what God has given you, He will give you the ability to give more. You won’t lack for resources of more grace, love, joy, peace. The fruits of the Spirit seem to grow in the fertile soil of a flowing river of grace.
I pray that your life and mine will be a river flowing with healing grace to those around us today.