For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine. Romans 1:11-12

Paul reminds us how we are strengthened and refreshed as we practice both giving and receiving well in community. For today’s soak practice, we want to challenge you to do something outside your normal routine of giving and receiving.

Consider what you could give away that you’re not used to giving. What do you have in terms of time, talent, or treasure that you could give away today? Perhaps it’s a monetary donation that’s over-and-beyond what you’re used to giving. Perhaps it’s paying for the person’s meal behind you in the drive-thru. Perhaps it’s dropping by a friend’s house to give them your time and listening ear. Perhaps it’s serving your neighbor by mowing their lawn or offering to pick something up from the store for them. Perhaps it’s using a talent you haven’t used in a while to bless another person from church (singing, encouragement, drawing, knitting, etc.). Perhaps it’s taking a few pieces of clothing or a meal to a homeless person on the street.

Consider how you might receive well today. Sometimes we can be so good at giving and having people depend on us that we’re out of practice at receiving well. How might you posture yourself to be ready and aware of receiving others’ time, talent, and treasure with a heart of humility and gratitude?

Journal about how these out-of-the-ordinary moments of giving and receiving made you feel. Express whatever feelings arose – feelings of discomfort, confusion, concern, warmth, encouragement, satisfaction, or refreshment?

By Yvonne Biel

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