I'm using the term Armageddon loosely, ok, very loosely, to describe the conflict I've been having between giving and receiving. A time of personal Armageddon started when I slipped on ice the middle of December and broke (you guessed it) my arm, resulting in me needing a lot of help, even to dress myself. I realized again, that receiving can be hard and that I'm not very good at it. I'm the oldest of 8 kids, and lived a blessed life so most of the time I'm on the giving end. It makes me feel good to be giving or doing something for others, not so good being in a position to need help. Awww, there goes that pride thing again. Some years ago I woke up on January 1st with one life and went to bed on December 31st of that year with a totally different one. I needed a lot of help picking up the pieces of my life that year, a profound exercise in humility. As I struggled, mostly with my pride, to be open to the help I needed, I became aware I had a long way to go to become a gracious receiver. There's lessons everywhere on being a cheerful giver and living with a servants heart but I didn't recall a whole lot on how to live as a cheerful receiver, except to say "thank you."
It also made me examine my spirit of giving. I had to admit some of my giving had an element of 'glad I'm not them' attached to it. That giving was about me feeling good about myself. That some of the shame I felt at needing help was based on my perceptions on what others thought. Awwww, that pride thing again.
I began to feel accepting the humility to become a graceful receiver would help me become a graceful giver. Seeing that accepting help was a way I could give back to others. To really know how to give to others I had to know how to receive their help.
So fast forward to this new time of 'Arm'ageddon and I see I still struggle with receiving help. It seems no matter how much pride you peel away there's still more there. But this is something I want to get right. So I pray again for humility, to accept I need help, and I need others, and that others can do just as good a job as I can. Because this is important, if I don't know how to receive, how can I ever truly receive the gift of Jesus.