Giving and Receiving
“… Remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” (Acts 20:35)
This has been called the ninth beatitude of Jesus. Jesus began His greatest discourse with a check-up from the neck-up. He shared eight beautiful attitudes with His disciples that can make us the salt of the earth and the light of the world. His ninth beatitude can transform and revolutionize our relationships.
If you are in a relationship, like marriage, for what you can get from that other person, Jesus has a challenge for you. For one week, instead of thinking of what you are going to get from the person, ask yourself continuously what you can give to that person. I have given this assignment to many married couples and I have seen the challenge revolutionize their marriages.
You see, if you are in a marriage for what you can get from each other, neither of you is receiving anything because neither of you is giving anything. The relationship is a sterile empty vacuum. But this one attitude can completely transform your marriage. This attitude can transform any relationship if one or both of the people in that relationship will dare to accept this challenge from Jesus.
There is no place in the Gospels where Jesus speaks these exact words. However, in addition to having this quotation of Paul, the spirit of this beatitude characterizes all the relationships of Jesus we read about in the first four books of the New Testament.
I exhort you to accept this challenge of Jesus for one week! If you do, the impact it will have on your relationships will convince you that this is the Word of God. You will also prove in experience that there is in fact more happiness (which is what the word blessed means), in giving than in getting.