The Thoughts of Gunnar

Receiving Part 5-David Hanes
February 23, 2015, 2:00 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

This next entry is from our brother, David Hanes, and some things he has learned recently about giving…and receiving.  Surely it is worth our while to read!  If you wanna just get an email when any blog on this topic comes up, press the follow button at the bottom of the page.  If you see my history, I RARELY blog, so other than this topic, I doubt your inbox will be getting too stuffed. 🙂

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.  The past 18 months in the Hanes’ household has seen it’s share of activity.  Most of this activity has brought us to a place of brokenness and neediness.

There’s something you learn when you’re in a “needy” space; it’s truly more blessed to give than to receive.  I stole that from Paul.

When the last thing on your mind is food and people show up at your door with dinner and groceries, you learn how blessed it is to give….

When a family you barely know sends you a check that pays your mortgage for the month, you learn how blessed it is to give…

When that guy you talked to once on the phone sits across from you at lunch offering to help you walk in the freedom he now enjoys…

When the cards and pictures come rolling in and fill the walls of the hospital room you call home for time…

When you drive a car for free because someone else can afford it and you cannot…

When people show up ‘just because’ with encouragements and hugs and hope when you’ve run out of reasons to press on…you learn how much more blessed it is to give than to receive.

Seems a little backwards, I know.  There’s something the Lord does when we are in a place where our need to receive supersedes our desire to give.  He teaches us how much we need each other.  He teaches us how important we are as a community and how insufficient we are as individuals.  For me, Jesus had to break down a lot of the self sufficient, self reliant, do it all yourself soul that had been established by my own pride and the culture we now find ourselves in.  He did that by giving me little choice but to rely other people.

In the past I knew it was to work myself out of a bad situation.  To get myself out of debt and into a good job and in with the right people.  I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with those things, but I knew what it was to get those things done by myself.  And I could give a lot to others by myself.  When I had nothing to give, when it was all gone and I wasn’t going to make it without the help of others; that’s when I truly learned the value of giving.  It wasn’t by being able to give that I learned this.  It was by having to receive from others that the Lord taught me what Paul meant by these words:

It is more blessed to give than to receive

Because of my experience with life in Christ, I’ve come to see that in order to understand how blessed we are in giving, we need to know what it feels like to receive.  From divorce to homelessness to loss of a job to fighting debt and standing by my spouse as she fights cancer and relational struggles of all kinds, I’ve come to know the Lord as the truest giver.

He gives through the people that show up.  He gives through their love and bank accounts and skills and giftings and presence.  For the past 18 months, we’ve been in the “needy” space I first mentioned.  Praise God for the church in Nashville and abroad who have held us up and provided for us more than we could ask or imagine.  The more we receive, the more our hearts long to give


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