Freely you have received, freely give. Matthew 10:8b
Some people are "funnel people" and some are "bucket people". What does that mean? I'm glad you asked! Allow me to explain....
Funnels are conduits. Things pass through funnels on their way to someplace else. Funnels are into resourcing. Funnels are generous.
Buckets are containers. The things you put into a bucket, the bucket keeps. Buckets are into accumulating. Buckets are selfish.
Buckets see themselves as the owners of whatever ends up in their keeping. Funnels realize that they are just stewards of the things that are poured into them.
Are you starting to wonder, "Is she talking about tools, or people?" It looks like we've followed that parabolic arc, again. There we were, standing over there, talking about tools--innocent and boring. Suddenly, we're over here, talking about stewardship and greed--a little uncomfortable.
So let's talk about funnels and buckets. A funnel person sees what they have as a resource to be shared. They're on the lookout for someone who needs what they've been given. A bucket person wants to know what's in it for them. They want more, bigger, better, faster, newer.
The problem with being a bucket? God has called us to be funnels. Sometimes, it's hard. My Inner Bucket tries to hold something back, to keep "just a little bit" of what He's intended for me to pass on to others. But there's reassuring news in the same passages that call us to funnelhood. In the same breath that He tells us to give it away, Jesus promises our needs will be met, and then some!
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
And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well. Luke 12:29, 31
"Be careful not to do your 'acts of righteousness' before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
"So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. Matt 6:1-4
So let's answer the call to funnelship! Let's cast aside our bucketish tendencies and choose "the easy way" to learn the habit of giving. Let's voluntarily choose the funnel lifestyle and not wait until circumstances force us to learn what the difference is between a bucket and a funnel....
...A funnel is just a bucket with the bottom knocked out of it.