Gift Received

FallWe are moving into the season of giving. My favorite time of year except for trying to buy something for my husband. He is a great gift giver, thoughtful and generous. He is a terrible gift receiver. He is impossible. The gift is almost always returned. He will say things like, “I don’t think I’ll use it, it was too much money, I don’t need anything,” etc.

I will painstakingly search for the perfect gift. Last year I was certain I had found it. His tackle box had broken. I went to the outdoor store and found the perfect replacement. He was going to love it. I had finally hit a home run. When he opened it, he kind of smiled. He liked it. I had finally succeeded, and then he spoke, “But Dad said he found an old one in his garage that I could have…” Ugh. It was returned.

I get it. I’m not the best gift receiver either, but I’m on the road to recovery. I was taught a valuable lesson decades ago from a friend, George Bass. Through the Mountain TOP ministry we were doing minor home repair projects throughout the Tennessee Mountains. The  families we worked alongside would often graciously offer a token of their appreciation. A glass of iced tea was easy to accept, but some of the treats, harvested goodies, and tokens were not easy to accept. George taught us to always take what was offered. Others want the joy of giving, too, and they give what they have. They were blessed and want to be a blessing. This taught me the value in being a gracious receiver.

The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed; those who help others are helped. (Proverbs 11:25 MSG).

I still struggle. I don’t want to burden others and will often say, “Oh, you don’t have to do that.” However, we are told to graciously give and bless others, so they can also give and be a blessing. We need to be able to joyfully give and receive. If we can’t receive, how do we receive the many blessings God pours out on us? I am learning to smile, inwardly say gift received, and outwardly say thank you.

How are you at gift receiving? Does it come naturally, or do you struggle like me? I’m still trying with hubby. Maybe this years birthday gift will not be returned.

What has God taught you about being a good receiver? Share your stories here and breathe life and bring hope to others.

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2 comments on “Gift Received
  1. Marie Selb says:

    Mary, I have to tell you what happened to me after reading this blog about accepting gifts. We have a neighbor that struggles with yard work especially in the fall with all the leaves. I love to mulch and clean up those leaves and find it very satisfying – not work at all. I like to help our neighbor. She has very little and is always trying to give me something for my help. I always say no and I am sad to say I sometimes was not very nice about it. Something came over me this past Saturday afternoon and I graciously accepted her offer of a serving of lasagna and a chocolate bar. She was so pleased and I instantly thought of you and this blog. I thank you for making me aware of how I was behaving and giving me the courage to change.

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