31st May 2011

Without Receivers

“And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that he said, ‘It is more blessed to give than receive.’”
Acts 20:35 (NKJV)

It is interesting to notice how often people are unwilling graciously to receive. It seems many feel that to receive is to put them under some obligation, to indebt them to the giver. To have received is often the reason we want to give something ourselves. We may ask, “Did we receive a Christmas card from them last year?”, and that is the basis for our sending, or not, a Christmas card this year. We may argue, based on the above scripture, that we should be a giver and not a receiver. But…how can we be a giver if there is no one who will receive?

The greatest giver of all is God, and whether we like it or not, we are the greatest receivers—and God would have it so!

So where would we be if we refuse to receive? Outside of Grace! The very word itself means gift, and we have all received the gift of forgiveness from God. Does that leave us indebted to God? We could reason that way and that would lead us to legalism, to obligations and to works in an attempt to repay.

That is not what God wants. He freely gave to us without obligation. The only response God is seeking is one of love expressed in thankfulness and gratitude, not debt. After all what could we give to God that he does not already have? As God graciously gave, we should graciously receive, and give thanks for what God has freely given us.

This is also how we should be to one another—giving without expecting anything in return; receiving not expecting to have to repay.

If we are not willing to receive, how are we to be the source of blessing to those who desire to give?

Prayer
Father in heaven, you who are the first to give, help me to be a gracious receiver, as I receive from you and from my fellow human beings, who choose to give to me. Remove from me feelings of indebtedness, which undermine true gratitude, and help me truly to be thankful.
Amen

Study by David Stirk 

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