Free to Receive {#31 Days}

My sheep hear my voice, I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life.” ~John 10.27-28

Know what you can do and don’t confuse it with what you cannot. This maxim speaks to the value of knowing your strengths and being comfortable with your weaknesses. It is about not buying into the delusion of the age where everyone is larger than life, a superhero in control of their own fate.

Think about it: When was the last time someone asked you for help? Or replied to a question with the answer, “I don’t know?” When was the last time you heard yourself say the words, “I need help.”

We are conditioned for self-sufficiency in this do-it-yourself world. Need feels like weakness. Lack fuels shame. We’re all turned in on ourselves refusing to to receive anything from someone else.

This refusal to receive is a prison of pride. A pride that hides you behind what you can do for others, never being known, never feeling loved. Always protected by your position and contributions.

Pause and consider: {especially if you are in Christian ministry of any kind}, when was the last time you said to anyone, “I need help”?

Our superhero complex has us rushing to lead the way, have the fix, answer all the questions, to gather all “your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” With our cape flying proudly in the wind, our hearts bend near breaking, knowing we are the tired. We are the poor. We are those yearning to breathe free.

We cannot give what we don’t have. Receiving always proceeds giving.

Jesus offers us what we do not have. He speaks truth we can receive from his voice. He offers understanding we can receive from his truly knowing us. He offers us leadership and we can confidently follow. He offers us eternal life, so we can stop trying to earn what he freely gives.

A dangerous thing happens to our souls when we are always the giver and never the receiver. Do you find yourself there now? When was the last time that you drank in refreshment from another’s leadership, teaching, prayer, counsel, or hospitality? What makes you think that people will only love you if you keep up your facade of supernatural strength? You know that pride is kryptonite to ever being truly known and loved.

I’ve been in this place before. I’ve borne its ball and chains. There is freedom. It begins with Jesus. Receive from him. Let him give you the comfort of his voice, the acceptance of his knowing you {as you are}, the surety of his leadership, and the abundance of his life.

Today may be a good day to look around your little world and decide you’ll be a superhero no more. Those relationships where all you do is give and lead and be in charge–they have to change. What need are you hiding under your cape? Is it really that hard to ask for forgiveness? for help? for understanding? to admit wrong? Is it really that hard to acknowledge that you are not all powerful and sufficient?

Your needs make you human. In receiving you are loved. Receive today and be free. Free indeed!

This month I’m participating with The Nester in her 31 Days challenge to write every day on a topic of choice. I’m writing this month on how Jesus make us free.

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