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Pressed down, shaken together, running over

August 25, 2010

A couple of nights ago Mr. Sparky and I decided to splurge and go out to dinner while the youngest Sparkette was at her youth meeting.  We ended up at PF Chang’s.

You really can’t go wrong at PF Chang’s.  Everything there is tasty.  On this particular evening we decided to order some new dishes. Mr. Sparky ordered Ground Chicken and Eggplant, extra spicy.  I ordered Dan Dan Noodles, extra spicy.  I regularly order Dan Dan Noodles at Pei Wei, which is owned by Chang’s, so I figured it would probably be similar (I was right.  Not the same, but similar). We both had a cup of hot and sour soup.  It was all quite delish.

As our server brought us our check, Mr. Sparky asked her about her accent, which sounded Eastern European and he was guessing Russian.  Linguistically he was close. Bulgaria.  She then told us that we were her last customers on her last shift.  The next day she would be on her way to Chicago for a permanent move.  We chatted with her a little as she boxed up our leftovers.  It was clear she was excited about the upcoming move.

As Mr. Sparky was figuring the bill, he paused.  I looked at him and said “bless her”.  He said he intended to, but he was just trying to figure it out.  Then he looked at me and said “Bless her, bless her?”  “Yes”, I answered.  I saw him write down the exact amount I had in mind on the tip portion of the bill.  We then left and started to go for a walk in the shopping area, killing a bit of time before we had to pick up Sparkette.

We were partway down the sidewalk when Mr. Sparky stopped and held out his hands with an exasperated look. “What?”  “I forgot the box of leftovers!”  “Oh, stink!  That was your lunch tomorrow, too!”  We discussed the possibility that just maybe they hadn’t been pitched yet and so we turned straight around and headed back to the restaurant.

We asked the hostess if it was possible the box was still around.  She went into the kitchen to look.  She came out and said no…it had already been pitched.  She apologized and said that when she waits tables she tries to stick the left-behinds in the fridge for just a short while in case their owners return to claim them.  We discussed the fact that this happens at least once a night in that restaurant, usually more often, and as we were discussing that the manager came around the corner.  He asked what was up and we told him we’d left behind a box of leftovers and had hoped they were still there, but we were too late.  He asked what we ordered.  We told him.  He said to pick one and he’d have the chef make up a fresh order for us to take with us…we did have five minutes to wait, didn’t we?

HECK YES!

We told him we’d like the Ground Chicken and Eggplant, since Mr. Sparky liked it best and this was going to be his lunch, and then we sat down to wait.  It was a bit more than five minutes, but not much more, when the manager came around the corner carrying a take-out bag.  He handed it to us and said “Here you go.  I had them add the other one, too.”  Sure enough, there were two full entrees in the bag, complete with fortune cookies.  We were flabbergasted and thanked him profusely and complimented him on the service.  After all, this was our mistake!  He handed Mr. Sparky his card and said “PFChangs.com.  Tell them!”  We said we would…and as soon as we got home, we did.

We walked out of the restaurant feeling rather humbled.  We ate our fill, forgot our leftovers, and were given two full entrees which would be four more meals, easily.  We were partway across the parking lot when Mr. Sparky said “Hey!  This is God blessing us back, isn’t it?” “Yup, sure is”, I replied.  He noted that what we received was far more than what we had given.  I said that it just goes to show that you can’t out-give God.

And it’s true.  You can’t.  He has a way of blessing blessers, but in the end you don’t end up feeling all puffed up that you gave…you end up feeling humbled that what you gave was so small in comparison to what you received.  He’s so generous. And so amazing.  And full of surprises.

“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

We definitely received more than we gave, but we did give in generosity.  That’s the only way I can make sense of that verse in light of what happened.  We used a generous measure in terms of what we had, and God poured back a generous measure in terms of what He has.

So in the interest of blessing blessers, I want to encourage you to visit the Sandestin PF Chang’s the next time you’re hankering for a tasty Asian-influenced meal. I like the idea of supporting businesses who are in the business of serving God…even when they may not know they’re doing it.

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. August 25, 2010 8:30 am

    Probably your best post to date. Love it!

  2. August 25, 2010 9:43 am

    this is all too funny.. i was talking to erica last night and i told her that same verse in luke!!! ive known that verse since i was a kid but never really thought about it and applied it to my life. you truly can not out give God. test Him!!

  3. August 25, 2010 10:43 am

    “He has a way of blessing blessers, but in the end you don’t end up feeling all puffed up that you gave…you end up feeling humbled that what you gave was so small in comparison to what you received. ”

    This is just fantastic! I am totally experiencing this kind of thing right now. We’ll never trump God’s generosity, but it sure as heck is fun to try and watch the wake of His blessings flow onto others’ lives!

    Great blog and keep it up!

  4. Jen permalink
    August 25, 2010 11:34 am

    What an amazing although not surprising, representation of God’s faithfulness :)

  5. August 25, 2010 12:12 pm

    May you be blessed again for the blessing you have given here.

    Gotta love a little Wild Goose with your Chicken Eggplant!

  6. August 26, 2010 12:23 am

    Thank you all for your comments and encouragement. I’m really glad I had a story to tell about God’s faithfulness that He would then use to bless and delight others. I really do love bragging on Him. :)

  7. sandy permalink
    August 30, 2010 8:41 pm

    Hey…I’m glad I remembered to come and listen to the story about how awesomely awesome God is. I am really anticipating the wonderous things He is planning to do to bring glory to Himself in my apathetic family. May He blow their minds!

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