All you have to do is look at a shop window, and you’ll know that the season of giving is fast approaching. Along the way, we’re likely to be reminded of Jesus’ teaching that “It is more blessed to give than to receive”.
It’s pretty nice to receive. Especially if it’s something we really needed or desperately wanted. Giving costs us time and effort and money, and we know that these resources may not be compensated fairly by those we’ve given to. But of course, we also know that some things can’t be calculated in man hours and monetary value. Giving is an emotional investment as well, and it can sometimes be a high-yield prospect on that front. It feels good when our love and thoughtfulness is recognised and reciprocated. However, there are other times when we pour our heart and soul into someone only to watch them eat our sacrifice for lunch, wipe their mouth with it, and move on.
Is it more blessed to give then?
I say yes. And I say it knowing that giving can make us less wealthy, more physically and emotionally drained, and that it can open our hearts up to a world of pain that could have been avoided. All of this is true. And all of this is exactly what makes giving more blessed than receiving:
It is a blessing for our selfish hearts to learn what real love is by paying the high price that it requires.
It is a blessing for our proud minds to learn humility by thinking of the needs of others before our own.
It is a blessing for our little feet to step in the footprints of Jesus, who considered it more blessed to give, even when the gift was his own life.
Yes, it’s nice to receive. Receiving tends to make us more wealthy and comfortable, and that’s not bad. On the other hand, giving tends to shape us into the kind of people who are more loving, humble, and interested in others. Jesus knew what he was talking about. Some of the best gifts in the world can only be received by giving ourselves away.
It really is more blessed to give.