Did you spend money you didn’t have, searching everywhere to find just the gift you knew they wanted?
Were you heartbroken when their response was less than excited?
Oh my. How sad is that?
I have lost count how many times that has happened to me. Until back some 10-15 years ago I learned a big lesson.
Giving should be as if you were giving to God.
The recipient is a messenger receiving the gift for God even if they don’t know it.
Proverbs 11:25 “A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.”
Once the giver understands the importance of giving everything to God, your heart won’t break when the recipient replies, “thank you” and stores the gift in their closet.
This wonderful revelation entered my skull only to make it to my brain in non-record time. The revelation was not about the receiver’s response as much as it is about the giver’s motive.
So here I am confessing a story where I didn’t respond at all to the giver’s expectations.
And….then the Holy Spirit convicted me.
My husband and a friend have a garden out in the country on land his friend owns. Early spring they till the ground and plant everything from tomatoes, to squash to cucumbers. It is quite a feast of blessings from God to enjoy fresh vegetables. They also are very generous giving much of it away.
On my behalf I must add cooking (which we all know I don’t do except it is necessary) for my husband is not easy as his taste in food is quite the opposite of mine. I was surprised when he mentioned baking zucchini bread because I thought he wouldn’t like it.
I enter here I had no intentions of baking zucchini bread so if it was going to happen someone else was going to end up with that job.
Mark continued to speak about baking zucchini bread. He is a good cook in some areas; baking is not one of his best.
He announces yesterday he is going to bake some. Fine by me.
He had two loaf pans and the bread turned out almost perfect. Tasted delicious.
Only I wasn’t excited about it.
When I arose from such a deep sleep this morning, zucchini bread was not on my discussion list at 7:30 am.
He was so excited about taking it to his friends at church.
My response, “oh. That’s great honey” as I sat motionless in the swivel chair trying to focus.
Proverbs 15: 23 “A man finds joy in giving an apt reply–and how good is a timely word!”
As he continued to brag about his zucchini bread I was not the least bit interested. In fact I for the most part dismissed his excitement.
God works wonders through zucchini bread. Realizing how many times I had been disillusioned by the indifference of others God convicted me of doing the same thing to Mark.
After church I apologized to him. He was thoughtful in his acceptance. I remarked how proud he should be that he successfully made zucchini bread especially since many men don’t know what the kitchen looks like.
In my confession I offered my “learned lesson” of the years of pain and agony I received from unwanted gift giving! Oh woe is me…..
He was more than thrilled to have my gracious approval of his baking credentials especially since he will have plenty of ZUCCHINI to make into ZUCCHINI BREAD this summer!
Proverbs 28:19 “He who works his land will have abundant food.”
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