Please Hear Me Out…
From the title, I expect you might be wondering why I have said this. Please hear me out before you gasp for air and say it’s wrong because it says in God’s Word that “it’s better to give than receive” (Acts 20:35). I totally believe this 100%.
You Cannot Give If You’ve Not Received
However, I am now going to make this statement that will hopefully make you realize why it is sometimes better to receive than give. So are you ready for this statement? here goes;
“You cannot give something that you’ve never received!”
So, there it is reader. I am sharing this because around 7 years ago I personally gained so much from this revelation.
Certain Things Can Change You And Not For The Better
I was in business for many years within a major, complex, specialty food supply chain to global companies. Doing business in this sector changed me over the years in that it trained me not to receive anything from anyone. I learned that if someone gave me something, then they will expect something back from me in return. This made me very wary of people and skeptical of their motives. My mindset was on high alert in these areas and I learned to be highly restrained in my approach. This resulted in me being in a very sad place, as my barriers remained up almost permanently.
A New Life From One Word
In early 2011, I gave everything up and handed over all that I had ever known. I walked away from my business and my lifestyle, having received a word from God. This was an exciting and nerve-racking time for me and for the whole of my family. Six months later, we were in the USA after deciding to go to Bible college in Colorado. We were starting a whole new life and then a three-year journey.
A Gift For Me…Mmmmmm
Funny enough, one morning in early 2012, I was walking across the parking lot with my wife to go to college when a man came up to me and said, “I have bought you something and wanted to bless you.” It was only a small gift, but the first thing out of my mouth was, “I can’t take that. Please keep it.” He looked at me somewhat taken aback and bewildered and said, “I am blessing you; please do not rob me of my blessing.” I took the gift very reluctantly, said thanks, and walked off. My mind started to race to think,
Why did I just do that? Why did I act the way that I did?
Why Would You Wash Someone’s Feet?
On this particular morning, there was a time of worship before classes started. As I was still thinking of the situation, I felt God say to me, “Do you know you are like Peter when Jesus asked to allow Him to wash his feet? Please read John 13:1-9 (NIV). I said, “What do you mean?” He replied gently and lovingly, “Son, you treated that man how Peter treated Me. I was trying to give him something. You tried to reject this gift. You have spent so many years not wanting to receive that now you don’t know how to.”
You Have to Drop Those Barriers
He continued, “Son, this is what I want to say to you: you need to learn how to receive again. Drop your barriers and allow Me to give you what you need. Stop being prideful and let Me provide for you in this season. And here you go son; I have so much to give you, so much more than you can fathom or understand during this time. But this is the thing: you cannot give what you have not received from Me. What I want to give you is not for you to keep it all, but to give it away. I need for you to receive, so you can freely give to the ones I will show you. Are you willing now to receive all that I have for you? You have to make that decision.”
You Need to Learn to Receive to Be Able to Give
I was dumbfounded. But at the same time, I knew that what He wanted was that I would not only receive but also that I would freely give it away. If you read the Scripture above, you will see from Peter’s response, that he had a complete turnaround. This was the same for me. My humbled response was, “Lord, if this is the case, then please give me everything You have and everything You want me to have, so I can give it away”.
You Cannot Outgive God!
This encounter with Jesus changed my life and how I perceived receiving and giving. I love to give; it is exciting to see how giving can change someone’s life. And I am not just speaking about money, but time, gifts and talents and any other resources. Giving from what you have and what you have received leads to an overflow of God’s goodness, which just keeps carrying on. The more you get to give, the more He pours right back in!
He Gave His All
In this season of celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ, we can remember what John 3:16 (NIV) says,
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
An Unconditional Gift – Now That’s New
God has given us the most incredible gift of all, His Son! Why? Because out of His love, He gave us His best gift—free and unconditionally. His Son is a present so precious that the worth of His life is unfathomable to so many of us. Even more unfathomable is that if we receive Him as a gift, He is given to us for eternity.
We Are All Eternal Whether We Like it or Not!
Let me say as I finish up this blog: we are all eternal beings whether we like it or not. It is just a matter of where we will end up for eternity! However, I have received a gift so amazing that I can’t help but give it away and say that a life full of God will always outweigh all earthly riches, as these will come and go. But the love of God is forever (Romans 8:38-39 NIV).
Open Up Your Heart This Christmas
This season, if you have not received the gift of Jesus, then please open up your heart and these words to Him, “Lord, come into my life and wash my head, my hands, wash my feet, and wash everything. Please give me everything You have for me.”