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Leftover for a Blessing

 

Don’t Be Left Out… Be Left Over!
 
Open your refrigerator. What do you see? Do you keep “Leftovers”? If so, you may consider them to be a sign of:
a.)    Poor Measurement – Somebody simply made too much food
b.)    Next month’s science project – You never know when you’ll have to pull together a last minute prize winner with your middle school student!
c.)    Bad cooking – Enough said about that one, or
d.)    Abundance- Where did all this stuff come from?
 
Early on in our marriage, Deidre and I very rarely ate leftovers. We considered them a waste of time. Too often the Tupperware served as a holding place for stuff that inevitably would be tossed in the trash. Years later however, (with two children and much more budget conscious) our view of leftovers has changed considerably.
 
God’s economy is quite the opposite of human standards. In Judges chapter 7, Gideon was about to go into battle against the Midianites and God said, “You have too many men for me to give you the victory.” We rarely consider too much of anything to be a bad thing, unless you’re talking about cockroaches. We live in a society that believes and teaches, “More is better”. Anyhow, God gave Gideon a process of elimination that whittled the army down to three hundred men from over thirty thousand! Now that just seems absurd when you realize God was about to send them out against well over one hundred thousand troops. Ultimately, they were given a miraculous victory.
 
In the two-chapter book of Haggai, God stirred the “Remnant” of Israel to turn back to Him and rebuild the temple that had been destroyed. Previously, many Israelites had just given up hope and basically allowed Nebuchadnezzar’s army to take their life without a fight. The “Remnant” was the Israelites who when confronted by this wicked king, refused to give up. God honored their spirit, and this group of survivors became the people God used to carry a blessing to every other generation to follow.
 
God first rebuked the people through the prophet Haggai saying, “You never have enough. You work only to put your money into purses with holes.” He said this to reveal His withdrawal of blessing because of their lack of faithfulness. I know people who make $100K a year and have nothing to show for it. I also know people who make $15K a year and live a very happy and productive life. You see it’s not how much you have to start with, but what you do with what is leftover. It’s the “bottom line” that really counts.
 
Call it what you want, I have learned to appreciate leftovers as a special blessing. When we eat today, I can say that God has met our need. But when there are leftovers, it is evidence of abundance. The key is to consider even the small things in life gifts from God. Living from paycheck to paycheck seems to have become the American way, but it is not God’s way. God wants to do extraordinary things in your life, family, finances and everything else. He’s simply looking for a Remnant. He wants someone to be faithful to Him regardless of circumstances or the opinions of those who have already given up.
 
The question is: Will I manage the small things that God entrusts me with, in a manner that merits His favor with greater things? You may feel like you don’t have very much to work with. Perhaps you honestly feel hopeless. Give it to God. He knows you better than you know yourself. After all, He created you in His image. And He sees unlimited potential for your life. Don’t give up! Give the remnants, the fragments, and the broken pieces - THE LEFTOVERS to God... and watch Him work His greatest miracle… in you.