Today I want you to think about your interactions with others in terms of filling up a bucket and pouring its contents onto those people. With that in mind, let’s consider two important factors.
First of all, what’s in your bucket? Jesus points out a number of things that we can choose to pour out on others—namely, material possessions, love, good deeds, money, mercy, and pardon. It’s quite an impressive list. And yet, the Lord calls His followers to an even higher standard. He instructs us to give to “takers,” love our enemies, do good to those who mistreat us, lend expecting nothing in return, and grant mercy and pardon to those who don’t deserve it.
Why would He call us to such extreme action? Because as God’s children, we are expected to treat others the way He treats them—for “He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men” (v. 35).
The second factor to consider is the size of our bucket. Jesus says that by our standard of measure, it will be measured back to us (v. 38). However, we are also told to expect nothing in return from those we treat with kindness (v. 35). The ultimate reward for our loving and gracious behavior will come, not from them, but from the Most High God.
What are you pouring onto others each day? By showering them with grace, you display the character of your Father and show yourself to be His child. Use a big bucket full of love and kindness, and you’ll discover
that the Lord uses an even bigger bucket to lavish His goodness upon you.