Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”  Luke 6:38

Richard and Jane walked into the seed store.  Picking out a few of their favorite flower seeds they walked up to the counter to check out.  The clerk gave each of them a free packet of seeds telling them that this was a rare and unusual  plant and to follow the planting instructions carefully. 

On the walk home Richard and Jane took a look at their free  seed packets .  The name on the front was “Flower of Love”.  That sounded exotic.  They walked in silence as they read the planting instructions.    “There are plenty of seeds in this packet so take by the handful and broadcast everywhere.”  Richard looked at the size of the packet, it was rather small and had the word “SAMPLE” stamped in big red letters on the front.  He would just take them home and plant them in his own garden, there sure didn’t seem to be enough to share.  Jane noticed the same thing about the packet and tucked it back inside her bag. 

When they arrived home Richard and Jane began to work on their respective gardens.  He planted the seeds that he had bought and then opened the sample pack and looked inside.  Sure enough there were only a few seeds.  He shook them out into his hand and carefully planted them in his garden.  Jane opened her packet peering into it and seeing just a few seeds,  but seeing that her neighbor’s backyard was overrun with weeds decided to take the free flower seeds and toss them into her neighbor’s backyard, maybe they would grow as well as the weeds and add some beauty to the backyard.  After tossing them over the fence she glanced into the packet to make sure they were all gone before she tossed the packet into the trash and noticed there were a few more seeds so she tossed them into her other neighbors backyard.  Once again she noticed more seeds in her packet so she planted those in her own garden and then since she just kept seeing more seeds she decided to do just as the instructions said and take them by the handful and broadcast them through the neighborhood.  Every time she poured some into her hand there was still more in the packet.

Spring turned into summer and the seedlings grew into plants.  Richards plants started out well and the rare seeds grew into beautiful flowers.  He saved the seed and the next year planted more in his own backyard flower garden.  He was very proud of his rare plant that was so beautiful and loved showing it off to everyone who came by.  He was so absorbed in his own garden he failed to notice that the whole neighborhood was exploding with  the same rare  plant in his own small backyard plot.  The neighbors on both sides entire backyard was full of the rare plant.  In fact, if he had looked at all he would have noticed that after a few years of cultivating his rare plant they were getting smaller while the plants Jane had broadcast according to the directions on the packet were spreading and getting more beautiful every year.  One year Richard noticed his plants appeared to be mutating and not as beautiful as they once were, after a few more years they looked more like a weed than the beautiful plants they had once started out to be.  But Richard was so absorbed in his “rare” plants that he continued to water and fertilize them.  One day he invited a botanist to come over and take a look at his plants.  The botanist gave him an odd look as Richard pointed out his rare “Flower of Love”.  As he left Richards house and got into his car the botanist shook his head and wondered how anyone could confuse the “Weed of Covetousness” for the “Flower of Love”.

They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share.  1 Timothy 6:18

Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.  Hebrew 13:16

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