A Gracious Recipient

“Will this be together or separate?”

<Insert cricket sounds here.>

Ahh, can’t beat that wonderful awkward moment at a restaurant or cash register as that fateful question hangs in the air.

We’ve probably all been there– dining with a friend, co-worker, or acquaintance, and then the awkwardness of that question throws us off. “Crud, we didn’t talk about this beforehand. I don’t have the cash to cover us both unless I have to, but I don’t want them to pay for me either.”

I personally don’t really ever want to be the person to break the silence and answer that question, unless I had planned to pay for them in advance… I mean, I don’t want to make them feel awkward by stepping on their toes, and I sure don’t wanna look like a self-serving person by saying “Separate” too quickly.

I’ve seen many-a dinners turn into a duel for the check. Half-hearted arguments about who is going to pick up the tab can really throw off the vibe of a great experience. There’s a super fine line between being a self-serving heifer, a mooch and an ungrateful recipient.

But sometimes, we need to suck it up and let the other party treat us, especially when they insist.

Now, don’t get me wrong– there is a HUGE and important place for generosity. I mean shoot, a big premise of this entire ministry is based on our Factor of 7 experiences when we share God’s love through being generous.

But occasionally, we need to let go of our pride and simply be a gracious recipient.

In today’s culture, many people (aka especially women) refuse to receive… well, anything. A gift from a friend? We have the awkward response of “Oh well, you didn’t have to do that” all while thinking “Now I should to do something for them in return.” Sometime tells you that your hair looks super cute? “Yeah, well my face is broken out/pants don’t fit/blah blah blah.”

What is our deal with not being able to simply be a gracious recipient??

I’ve had a crash course with this lesson over the last week. My sweet and wonderful Mother-In-Love Lex was here from South Dakota. And she treated me to several meals out on the town, a wonderful manicure and pedicure, and a few other blessed moments… Early on, I felt guilty for all of the sweet things she was doing for me. Then suddenly, I heard God speak into my heart:

“Do not be ungracious, daughter. This woman loves you and wants to spend a few days blessing you for what you have done as a wife of her son and a daughter of Mine. Be gracious and accept what she is offering you. Her motives are pure and it is from my love that she gives to you.” 

Gulp. Ok. Heard ya, Jesus.

Gifts from God… They just keep on giving.

So today’s simple (yet semi-profoundish) challenge: When someone extends to us a gift of love, a kind gesture or a sweet compliment… Instead of making excuses… Be a gracious recipient and JUST. SAY. THANK YOU.

This also applies to our relationship with Christ. God has given us SO many gifts, and the last thing I want to be known as is a girl who won’t receive it. His grace? Thank you, Jesus. The gorgeous sunrise. I appreciate that God– thank you. A moment of peace and quiet in a normally chaotic house? Lord, thank you, this means so much to me.

Do you struggle with receiving gifts in your life, whether from people or the Lord? What is so hard about it? How does it feel when you simply smile and say THANK YOU? Share you ideas and comments below!

Open your hands and receive what He has to offer. Take it all in, knowing there are no strings attached. God is a gracious gift-giver– so let’s be gracious recipients in return.

Graciously receiving it all,

“So roll up your sleeves, put your mind in gear, be totally ready to receive the gift that’s coming when Jesus arrives.” ~1 Peter 1:13 (MSG) 

Categories: blessings, God | Tags: , , , , , | 13 Comments

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13 thoughts on “A Gracious Recipient

  1. LOVE this – thank you so much. I have a hard time accepting gifts and compliments, so this was much needed.

    • You are very welcome… I struggle with it too, and I don’t really enjoy awkward moments either– so this solves both problems 🙂

  2. Momma Lex

    Your welcome. I was also blest!!

    • I love you Mama Lex. So stinkin’ much. And hoping that the Lord someday moves us geographically closer together!

      • Momma Lex

        Its priority on my heart and prayer list! Love you, too.

  3. Aunt Jan

    Great post, Sharita. I need that encouragement – both about receiving from others and from God. Love reading your so very practical applications and real life examples. Keep up the good work. God Bless.

  4. Aunt Jan

    Also —– have to agree with you that you have the finest mother-in-love that anyone could ever dream up!

  5. Sharita,
    Great post! Learned this from my hubby’s Auntie Anna. She lavished gifts on all her nephews because she had no children of her own. They WERE her children. When involved in that awkward, “You shouldn’t have” moment she’d always say, “Just say thank-you. That’s all.” Auntie wisdom!

    • That is awesome, Dawn– and so super true. Let’s just receive and say thanks… Live in the blessing! Thanks for stopping by… Miss you 🙂

  6. Cheryl Monen

    Dear Sharita, I love your posts!! “Self-serving heifers” just struck me soooo funny. You have a genuine, fun way of putting things and I think you picked the PERFECT family to marry into cause they’re pretty funny too, but, here’s the deal, the “geographically closer” thing needs to be clear–you MUST move this way–we need precious Lex and her hubby here so we’re not thinking about them moving your way. Okay, got it?!! Keep up the wonderful witness–you are truly an awesome woman–and God has a fabulous plan for you. I soooo admire you for responding to His little nudges. Way to go girl!!! Love ya, Cheryl Monen

    • Don’t worry, Cheryl… Mama Lex shan’t be moving to us– because we are such army nomads that who knows where we end up. Hopefully after the next 11 years or so, God leads us back to the Midwest– but until that time, we will continue to love our fams long distance 🙂

      Thanks for your encouragement and comment– you blessed me!

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