Sometimes when I'm baking, and I'm measuring brown sugar I think of Luke 6:38 - "Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you."
You see, when you measure brown sugar, you need to pack it down, which means you squish as much of it as you possibly can into your measuring cup. When it is packed down, a lot more sugar is actually used than if you just scooped it and leveled it off as you would white sugar. This is because of the moisture content of the molasses in the brown sugar. (But you aren't reading this for a home-ec lesson, are you?)
Whatever we are giving; praise, encouragement, gifts of love and time, we are going to receive back proportionally to what we give. Jesus says here that it will be given to us using a good measure. My grandfather used to work in "weights and measures". That means he would check scales at markets or counters to make sure their scales were accurate. 1 pound should equal 1 pound. What we are given is going to be pressed down, shaken together and running over. Every little bit that can possible get into the unit of measure is going to be in there. So much that it will be spilling out all over. Another thing to notice from this scripture is that whatever unit of measure we use in giving, that same unit is going to be used for us.
Take a few moments and think about what unit of measure you are using. Is it an eye dropper, that you just drop a tiny amount of praise and encouragement onto your husband? Is it a teaspoon of time that you give your children after a busy day at work and school? Is it a measuring cup of love and time you give your parents? When I think of what kind of measure I want to be used towards me, I'm thinking a huge bushel basket or bigger! However for that to happen, it's up to me. Guess I'm just going to have to keep measuring that brown sugar and packing it in tight.
P.S. Think about 1 or 2 people you can give a little extra to today, and do it! Give a word gift (verbal or written), a gift of time or an inexpensive "gift" gift (card, flower, something handmade?) You'll be amazed at how good it makes you feel, and also the blessings you will receive back.