I shared at the beginning of the year that I had planned to explore a different Re word each week. However, life has a way of interrupting plans and the Spirit continues to emphasize over and over in my life, Proverbs 16:9 “We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.”
And, as he often does when I’m writing or teaching on a topic, the Lord gives me a life lesson.
Receive was the next word on the list. During the last few weeks, when I thought I would be giving, I’ve instead had opportunities to receive.
In January, my dad passed away rather quickly (although not unexpectedly, as his liver cancer had returned). His sudden turn for the worse had me scrambling to purchase a plane ticket and then scrambling to either rearrange my schedule or find others to cover commitments I had made.
Receive. Instead of giving, I received. I received the help of numerous amazing women who stepped up to teach, lead, and facilitate classes and events. I received help from neighbors who watched over our home while we were gone. I received help from family and friends who picked me up from the airport, provided meals for me and my sister, and sent words of sympathy, encouragement and prayer. I received, along with my sister, legal advice and assistance in navigating the necessary paperwork and financial settlements. And I definitely received the comfort of others who lived out 2 Corinthians 1:4 “He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.”
Receive. Sometimes it’s hard to do. Especially when we have hearts to give. Or feel like we’ve already received more than enough. But when we open our arms wide, we are in position to receive out of the Lord’s abundance. As John 1:16 says, “From his abundance we have all received one gracious blessing after another.”
Fling open your arms. Ask. Seek. Knock.