Giving - December 25, 2020 - "The Journey of a Lifetime Series"

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Giving what I have.

It was a simple outpatient procedure with a local anesthetic, but as I lay on the operating room table feeling more than a little scared, it started feeling like a really big deal. I'll never forget when she walked into the room. Just another nurse by all appearances although I never really saw her face or even knew her name, probably because I had my eyes closed most of the time! Somehow she knew my inner distress and came and stood beside me and simply held my hand. In an instant I felt completely comforted because she was with me in every way, completely present. Her peace and compassion were more than just a fuzzy blanket; they were a strong rope, a lifeline in the moment that only she could give.

So why do my pockets feel so empty a lot of the time when I'm faced with all the need that surrounds me? Part of the problem is how often I'm distracted by my own presumptions about what others need or want, and usually I'm wrong. When I look at some of the most precious things I've received throughout my own life from others, even strangers, it becomes very apparent to me that you and I actually have much more to give on any average day and moment than we often realize. The truth is I really can't give what I don't have, but the deeper challenge is for me to recognize that there are specific things in the moment that only I can give to those around me- things like forgiveness, or patience or compassion, or kindness, or LOVE or just acceptance. Much of the time all I have to give, really, is all I need to have because the things that I have available to give are actually just what's needed.


Scripture to consider - Acts 3:6 Then Peter said, "Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk."

Reflections

As you walk this journey today, how have you fallen into the trap of believing that what you have to give isn't enough?

What have you received recently from someone that really didn't cost much, but to you it was priceless?

What if the greatest gift God has given to those around you is actually in you?

How can you be more purposeful about really giving what you have to give even if it doesn't seem like a lot?

If you only had one thing and only one to give to others, what would you want to have?

How would your feelings and behavior change if you realized that many times you are the only one who can give what is needed?

How will you invite God to guide you in this endeavor, to give what you have?


Quotable Perspectives

“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”

Winston Churchhill


“You can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving.”

Amy Carmichael


“The excellence of a gift lies in its appropriateness rather than in its

value.”

Charles Dudley Warner


“Always have a willing hand to help someone, you might be the only one that does.”

Roy Bennett


“Receiving is always attractive, till you're the one giving.”

Adeyemi Taiwo Eunice


A simple prayer for giving:

Father, today I ask for a deeper awareness of all that you have imparted to me. Thank you that I am filled with the fullness of you and because of that I have everything necessary to respond to any need I encounter. Would you teach me a higher way of giving and a deeper way of loving? Will you reconcile the difference between what I have to give and what I think is needed so that the two become one and the same in my heart?

ABOUT US

We are on a journey with God, learning to see Him for who He really is, in us and for us, and learning to hear His voice in a way that allows us to respond to Him and cooperate with Him so that we can really know Him .

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