Give It First...

Just a few months ago we as a family were promoting products professionally and participating in the "hustle and bustle" of the Christmas season personally. As much as I personally love the holiday season, the one thing that I don't love is stressing over the right gift for someone. Everyone wants to find that perfect treasure for those "perfect treasures" in their lives. No matter how good our intentions, however, inevitably there is one gift that might have a defect, perhaps is the wrong size, color or just not that person's personal preference. It is at these times that we are reminded that it isn't the "gift" that matters nearly as much as it is the giver and the receiver.

Today I watched a video of the memorial service of country singer Joey Feek as her husband Rory shared Joey's "gift" to him and their family during a time when they were compelled to be giving to her. Through her battle with cancer, Joey Feek gave, and gave and gave - of herself, her love. Through the living example of his precious wife Joey, Rory's lesson learned was this. To truly receive love in its fullest measure, you must give it first. How simply profound! Love grows larger not by receiving it, but by giving it away.

The greatest discourse on love is found in ancient scripture and describes the essence and character of love this way...

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. it does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance... (everything else fails)... But love will last forever!

We can spend our whole lives on a quest for possessions, for success, for wealth, security, health, acceptance, and even love - all treasures in their own right. What we often find though, is that the treasures we desperately seek have been hidden in "plain sight" all along - in our very own hearts and minds. So if you feel a certain longing for something, start giving the very thing you are longing for to the best of your ability. Giving the treasure of "self" is like planting seeds - what you reap far outweighs what you give.

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