In recipes, a teaspoonful of an ingredient doesn’t always mean a level teaspoon.
It can be “heaping,” meaning generous enough to form a heap on top, or “scant,” which means barely coming up to the rim of the spoon.
Likewise, a recipe might call for you to press down the brown sugar in a measuring cup so that it’s “packed.” Or it might instruct you to use only a “pinch” of a spice.
But the measures God uses are always generous. The blessings and grace He bestows on us are never meagre or paltry, but plentiful and abundant.
When we examine the miracles of provision that God performed in the Bible, we find that in each case He didn’t just provide enough, but more than enough.
In Matthew 14:13-21, we read the account of Jesus multiplying five loaves and two fishes to miraculously feed 5,000 men (possibly 10,000 people when women and children are added). One would expect that every morsel would have been consumed by such a large crowd. But they took up 12 baskets of leftovers, more than the amount they started with!
Similarly, in Matthew 15:32-38, Jesus feeds over 4,000 people by miraculously multiplying seven loaves and a few fish. Again, after the crowd consumed what they needed, there were seven baskets full left over.
This pattern can also be seen in the Old Testament, where 2 Kings chapter 4 is bracketed by similar miracles of provision:
At the beginning of this chapter, the prophet Elisha multiplies a single jar of oil belonging to a poor widow so that it fills every single jar she had borrowed from her neighbours. It was not only enough oil for her to sell and pay off her creditors, there was so much surplus that she and her son were able to live on the rest of the proceeds.
And at the end of 2 Kings 4, we see another miraculous multiplication. Through God’s power, Elisha multiplied twenty barley loaves so that they fed 100 hungry men. Again, there was still bread remaining even after everyone had eaten.
Four miracles of provision; four times when there was enough to feed everyone; four times when there was plenty left over.
This tells us that God isn’t skimpy in His provision for His children. He doesn’t just give us a “pinch” of what we need or supply that is “scant.” God’s blessings are “heaping” and “packed down.”
He gives us enough for ourselves plus extra to help others, too. God wants us to be as generous with others as He is with us:
“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 NIV)
When we’re generous to those in need, we can expect God’s blessing to us to be abundant in return. That’s the way His economy works.
So use a bountiful measuring cup when you bless others, because that’s the way God loves you: richly, endlessly, until your cup overflows!
© 2020 Lori J. Cartmell. All rights reserved.