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An eNote
Don Anderson, Minister

Alvin Church of Christ



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In Giving We Receive
April 28, 2013


    from Don Anderson                               


In Giving We Receive


O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;

to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to show love.

For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we find understanding of our own undeserved pardon.

It is in dying to our self that we are born into eternal life!

St. Francis of Assisi


Selfishness…it is at the heart of the problems our world faces today.


The events of this world the last couple of weeks have certainly shown the evil side of mankind: 

A young man who inherited power in North Korea and is trying to show the world that he is a force to be dealt with by threatening war...The selfish motives of two brothers behind the tragedy in Boston...Countless shootings of innocent people in Colorado, Illinois, and Washington, D.C. to name a few...A letter mailed with poison to members of Congress...A student who stabbed 20 innocent victims at a local college. 


Mankind has become obsessed with themselves and will stop at nothing  to draw attention to themselves or their cause.


The truth is, we all desire to be heard. 

We all want to be understood, loved and made to feel important.  And even those of us who don’t commit such hyenas crimes against humanity are guilty of the same self-centered emotions.


But Jesus calls us to a higher standard of life...one that is focused not on ourselves but on others.

The Apostle Paul, in his farewell address to the church at Ephesus, reminded the elders that Jesus himself said, “It it more blessed to give than to receive.” – Acts 20:35


When we place others needs before ours, we display the real strength of humanity…compassion toward others!  Jesus himself tells us, “A new command I give you:  Love one another.  As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” – John 13:34-35


Jesus desires that humility and sensitivity be a major part of our lives.

Until we can weep for those who have erred against us; until we learn to love and pray for those who have hurt us; until we have learned the value of compassionately sharing others sorrow, distress and misfortune…we cannot know or understand real happiness that is born out of genuine compassion for others. 


Let’s face it, some of us are hard to love from time to time!  We all do things occasionally that flow from the ugliness of selfishness.  But we must understand that Jesus calls us to love even those who act in such a manner.  After all, that’s what he did when he willingly went to the cross for us.


“Love one another as I have loved you.”

John 15:12


It’s a simple command of our Lord…yet so hard to obey.  For the opposite of love isn’t hate.

It is selfishness.


May you find the courage to ask God to fill your heart with love and compassion for others.  And when others hurt you or those you love, may you look to the cross of Calvary as your reason to find the strength to forgive!


For it is in giving, that we receive!



May God’s richest blessings be yours!



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