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  • mark56397

November Newsletter

I think we can all agree - life is a series of "Give and Take". You give a little here, and take a little there, especially in a family, among friends, teams, businesses, schools and friendships. If you notice there, I mentioned just about every group we might find ourselves in through the course of life. In short, wherever there are people, there has to be some give and take.

THE big problems in life occur when someone is not pulling their share and they start to become a perpetual taker. Perpetual takers are like "energy vampires". They suck the life out of everyone around them and can even drain a bank account or two. I'm pretty sure we are all familiar with this type of person in our life - either in the past or currently.

WHAT is of vital importance right now, is that you can honestly say, "I'm not a perpetual taker", because if you are, then you have some work to do.

ONE of the clearest identifiers of a "taker" is that life is always about them. They care very little about you, the family, the team, the classroom, the company or even the health and welfare of the church they attend. It is 100%, full throttle, about their needs, wants and how they feel. Another indicator of a taker is if you challenge them about their self-centeredness, then you will face their wrath. Takers never share well with others, play well with others or care about any others. "Others" are simply on earth to give to them. Agur, son of Jakeh, wrote about takers in Proverbs 30:15, "The leech has two daughters. 'Give, give', they cry." He goes on to say, "They are never satisfied."

WHAT do we do about the takers in our life? For starters, we are commanded to love them, and love requires patience and kindness and even forgiveness. We do however need to either help them to grow up (we are all born takers) or set some clear boundaries. One of the clearest boundaries we can set is to never DO for someone what they should be DOINGfor themselves. My father and mother required my sisters and I to grow up by learning to "take" care of ourselves. One of the classic sayings in our family was, "Your legs are not broken." In other words, if you want something then get up and get it.

AND about that - Parents, your primary job on earth, other than leading your kids to Christ, is to teach them to be givers and not takers. While talking about marriage, the prophet Malachi wrote, "Has not the Lord made them one? In flesh and spirit they are His. And why one? Because He was seeking godly offspring." Malachi 2:15. Here's the thing though, if we lead our kids to Jesus, the Holy Spirit will eventually teach them to be givers and not takers because this is God's nature - Who so loved the world that He GAVE His only son..."

AS followers of Jesus, we must transition from being a perpetual taker to a primary giver. I say primary because we will always take a little. We just can't be "takers" as a lifestyle.

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