To give is better than to receive… or is it?

I have always encouraged people who were in need to receive well, the help of the community (e.g. church, friends, etc.). I believe that life is seasonal. There are seasons when we have plenty and so we should give abundantly. On the other hand, there will be seasons where we have little and so we should receive gratefully.

The key here is to be as good a receiver as you are a giver! The problem is that most of us struggle to receive well!

Recently I read a great article about this very subject, written by Chip Anderson. He writes,

Giving without receiving is a power trip. Giving without receiving does not allow others into our need and ache. Giving without receiving deprives others of the joy of serving us. Giving without receiving does not require trust, humility or vulnerability.

These days God is teaching me to receive… to be a good receiver. It’s awkward, frustrating, embarrassing, humbling, and necessary! I’m realizing that what I have is not enough to accomplish the vision God has called me to. My guess is that’s probably true for you too! God has called you and me to do something that will require more strength, wisdom, money, experience, etc. than we have stacked up on our “Look what I have” shelves! Bottom line, we have to be good receivers if we’re ever going to accomplish what God is calling us to do!

Chip wraps up his post with this insight:

Full-bodied, authentic, give-and-take community is scary, sometimes painful and awkward, and other times beautiful and gracious. But, in reality, the kind of community that only gives and never receives is not really community at all; just a cheap imitation.

I want to create and be a part of a community that not only gives well, but receives well too! Thanks Chip for a great reminder!

You can read the entire article here… and you won’t be disappointed!

2 thoughts on “To give is better than to receive… or is it?

  1. It takes a certain amount of humility to “receive” well. Something I strugle with. Usually my pride gets in the way. I even strugle with putting in a prayer request for myself. I guess along with pride there is a fear of seeming selfish.

    I’m working on it though. Great Post!


  2. When I was a single mother of three teenagers, I struggled with asking for help. In a time of desperation
    I asked the church. The pastor grabbed my hand and said , Thank God!! We were waiting for you to ask…
    What do you need. ?
    That simple. Some may ask why didn’t they just help. The answer is God knows my heart and it was a huge lesson for me.
    The part of it all that I take closest to my heart is:
    The pastor asked if It was a blessing to help others.
    My reply was an excited YES!
    He replied then why would you take that blessing from someone else…let them bless you.
    God wants to bless us.
    God wants to bless you.
    The blessing is in giving and recieving.
    thnaks for the reminder Paul

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