360 Gratitude, Part 3: Upgrading Our Reality Check

The giver, the gift, and the receiver: this is a basic three-point reality. When we forget the giver, the gift becomes an idol. When we forget the gift, we cease to see how generous He is and how much He values us. When we forget to be receivers, we assume an imagined position at the center. Life becomes “up to us” rather than “God with us.”

This three-point truth is the compass we place over both our past timeline and our present perplexities. Without it, the interpretation of our lives will be flat, absolutely vulnerable to time and chance, reduced to conclusions that either we have been very lucky or that things have turned out rather unfairly for us. But with this compass of giver, gift, and receiver placed over all things, be they joyful, painful, or mundane, we are able to discern a more accurate reality, that He is in the midst of all things, neither intimidated nor irritated, but innocent: spotless and able to absorb all that has befallen us and able to establish a new creation out of our current clay-pot state.

The compass of giver, gift, and receiver equips us with a way to see the Hidden Message in the every-day as well as success and failure–when we “nail it” with our performance and when we drop the ball: that His friendship with us is so strong that all things must serve it. All things. And having discovered the solid ground of being loved, being enjoyed, and being cared for, the foundation for true community is also found. (For only when we are secure in these things are we free to walk together and build what we have in our hearts to build.) Community becomes the host of this friendship, and together in community we become a city where He dwells with us. We have found our way home.


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