- Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Gift of Receiving
heart had a revelation, this past January, which penetrated the deepest
parts of me. I experienced the love of God like never before.
Understanding at a new level that God knows me, loves me and cares about
me in a very personal way melted my heart completely. He truly is the
giver of good gifts, and I learned to receive those gifts.
are often motivated to give, and that's good. We give our time, talent,
energy, money, etc. to helping and serving others. Isn't it better to give
than receive? Aren't those in ministry called to be the servant of all?
Yes, if done in God's context of love and not man's context which often
causes exhaustion and burnout. The truth is that we were made to receive
love, grace, peace, joy, vision, rest, and so much more, as well as give
it. However, we rarely
take the time to open up and receive. Yes, we have to make the choice to
receive. I thought I was a receiver, but a few months ago I realized I had
never allowed myself to receive as much or more than I gave. God changed
that when he kissed my heart open to receiving at a whole new level. Let
first of January, I had the honor of speaking at a gathering of churches
in Italy . This was my first trip to the Mediterranean ; a place I had
dreamed of visiting since my childhood. I knew my Father God had joyfully
reached into the secret dreams of my heart and given me the gift of my
heart's desire. In the two weeks following, I spent several days sharing
precious time with teachers of a Christian based dance school, taught a
worship dance workshop, went sight-seeing around Florence with new dear
friends, and daily completely enjoyed the company of those around me. I
breathed it all in. To my delight, every day I felt the deep kisses of the
Father. I literally cried from joy as I saw the most beautiful sights,
tasted the most delicious food, listened to the melodic language, and was
welcomed into the arms of those around me. Kiss, kiss, kiss... I felt the
Father plant them on my heart, my face, my life.
changed me. I have become a puddle of love. As it happened, I found that I
just wanted to love all those around me, both receiving them and receiving
from them. Long meaningful hugs that radiate with the overwhelming love of
the Father have become a part of my greetings. It only took a short time
to understand that when I open myself up to receive those around me, love
abounds. I also learned that when people know they are loved and received by
someone, then they truly open up to receive from
that person. Receiving those I met during those two weeks allowed us to
connect deeply. There was a remarkably quick time of healing, freedom,
learning, and growth in those God brought me to, and in me.
demonstrated receiving and loving when he walked the earth. Matthew
9:10-13 tells of a dinner party that the new disciple, Matthew, who was
just out of the tax collecting business, threw for Jesus. Matt invited the
only other people who had been willing to hang around with him for the
past several years, other tax collectors and the rejected "scum"
or "sinners" of the town. Jesus came to the dinner and received everyone
there. He didn't separate himself or look down on them; instead he
demonstrated that he valued them. He ate, spoke, laughed, listened and
shared with them. He was willing to receive them as friends, valuable
people. As a result, they were open to receive his love, truth, and
others allows us to love deeper; we become like Jesus. When we open up to
receive, everything is sweeter; you can give while being refreshed. You
will find that without working at it, you will give more because people
will be willing to receive more from you. The time you spend with others
will be real, relational, and productive. Love must be the root and
motivation of all we do.
Lord brought confirmation of this truth through many people while in Italy
. One woman who came to the worship dance workshop told me that a friend
told her about how I ministered in love at the conference the week before.
Because of her friend's testimony, the woman said she had to come and
receive from me at the workshop. My heart melted. , "You are the
beloved of Italy ," a dear brother wrote to me. A minister of love,
that is what I want to be; I want to be like Jesus.
you are in a ministry, you are probably giving, giving, giving. God wants
to give back to you. He wants to kiss you deeply and let you know that you
are the most precious of all his creations. Take some time to receive his
kisses. Lift up your eyes and receive from those around you. Don't be so
busy that you pass on invitations to eat and fellowship with others. Slow
down and look at the beauty of the people God created and what he has
gifted them to do. Stop to truly appreciate people and show them they have
value. Let God's love well up within you until it overflows from you to
all people. You will begin to know who you are at a deeper level while at
the same time being refreshed and renewed. Give and receive, pour out and
be filled, minister and be refreshed, this is a vital key for you.
Receive, like Jesus, and others will receive you as a person and receive