Friday, June 15, 2012
A Dramatic Turn of Events
We're making final preparations for our first family vacation in over seven years. As I go through my check list, I can't seem to fight off a flood of memories from our previous life
This vacation is occurring due to some generous friends who are taking us to "house sit" with them on the coast. In our past life, we were the ones who did the inviting. Clearly there has been a dramatic turn of events.
Generosity is, in and of itself, rewarding. Giving imparts benefit to both recipient and beneficiary. From a selfish perspective, it's affirming. It strengthens the giver's self worth. The selfish side of me misses it. I loved being the giver. Picking up the check, providing the vacation, even taking people on our boat was joyous and gratifying. As our out of pocket medical for the year inches ever closer to $8000, it's not hard to understand why these activities just aren't an option these days.
I confess. I like receiving a whole lot less. It's humbling, and at times just plain hard. It reminds me that all my illusions of control are just that.
I'll stop there, lest I sound ungrateful. In truth, I'm not. I will never be able to fully express my appreciation and gratitude to those who invest in our family. They are the real treasure. What they give is far less valuable than sharing life with them. They themselves are the real gift.
Here it is, another unplanned confession. God has been good to us. I'm grateful that I have experienced "both sides of the equation". I know that I'm a better man for having lived both. Still, it's no great mystery which one I prefer.