I spent the morning catching up with a friend and we got onto the subject of “the cup of blessing”, you know, as you do!
This particular cup comes from Psalm 23 “My cup overflows with blessings.” A lot of versions say “my cup overflows” but the NIV includes “with blessings”.
My friend, who is so full of Gods wisdom, was explaining to me that our cups are blessed by God, which therefore means that our cup is full of blessings. Now if we imagine ourselves as that cup, then we too are blessed by God and are also filled up with His blessings. In fact we are overflowing with them. What a beautiful image!
But these blessings are not for us alone. God made us for relationship and so He always wants us to share in everything with others. Whether is hard time or joyous times, He wants us in relationship. So He wants us to share these blessings with others; friends, family, those in need, and sometimes even people we don’t know. It’s such a wonderful image of not only receiving Gods love bountifully for ourselves (“overflows”!) but also sharing His love with abundance (“overflows”!).
So can you IMAGINE my delight when shortly after I popped into Pret A Manger (my favourite British coffee house) to get my favourite extra hot flat white and chocolate croissant before going home, when the barista handed me this cup?!
Joyfull. Joy filled. A cup filled with joy.
I love this cup! And I just love how this married with the conversation I was literally just having with my friend. And I just LOVE the way God joins in with our conversations like this.
So I then reflected upon this cup and it’s beautiful description. I concluded that if we are filled with blessings then it must mean we are also filled with joy because blessings bring joy. In fact, surely we must therefore be “overflowing” with joy? As the apostle Paul teaches us, we should be joyful in all situations. To most people this sounds impossible but that’s because they are possibly confusing “joy” with “happiness”. Of course it’s impossible to feel an emotion like happiness all the time but joy is something else. Joy comes straight from God. We gain it through knowing who Jesus is and accepting Him into our lives and in all situations, no matter how bad things might be, we can feel joy from the privilege of knowing Jesus Christ.
So may your cup be blessed and filled with blessings and joy, and may those blessings and that joy reach out and fill up to overflowing those whose lives you touch. You could even ask God to show you who He wants you to bless today!
I wrote this blog a couple of years ago but I returned to it today because I recently heard a sermon that made me think more about overflowing and how we can make sure we continue to overflow. I follow a pastor on Instagram called Rich Wilkerson Jnr who leads a church called Vous in Miami. In the sermon I was listening to, he was speaking about how God fills us up through rest. We aren’t any use to anyone when we are burned out and run down and so God created the Sabbath in order that we rest to get filled back up again.
He was saying that most of us have the mentality that we’ll rest when we get tired, yet Gods plan was to keep us filled up through rest on Sabbath in order that we don’t get to that point. Pastor Rich even pointed out that Sunday, our appointed day of rest, is the first day of the week. We are meant to start our work from a place of rest! Which can then be used to outpour to others because we have more to give and more to offer. This time of year is a time when most of us burn the candle at both ends! There is so much to do in preparation for Christmas and there are so many parties to go to! For us this year the season began well before 1st December! When Christmas comes around, a time to celebrate the one who came and gave us Sabbath, we are normally burned out and desperately using our few days off to recuperate. But if we stop NOW! and have some time of Sabbath and rest it will allow us to overflow so much more easily and joyously. There are many for whom the Christmas season is a hard and painful season. Let’s be asking God to fill us up so that we have enough to overflow into their cups so that we can share Jesus’ joy with them.