Giving or Getting
When we wake up every morning, we make a decision whether we are going to be a person who is a getter or a giver. How we decide to spend our time, energy, and money for the day will determine whether we focus on getting or giving.
Our choice has consequences. Giving leads to joy, peace, and abundant living. Getting leads to hoarding, accumulating, and a totally inward interest.
In the country of Israel there are two bodies of water which illustrates this very clearly. One body of water is the Sea of Galilee. It is a beautiful, luscious, inviting place. There are beautiful trees and green shrubs and a lot of fruit. You see birds nesting in the trees. There is great fishing in the Sea of Galilee. It is a place of life.
Down from Jerusalem a few miles is another body of water–the Dead Sea. What you see there is the opposite of the Sea of Galilee. You will find no green trees or animals living around it. There are no fish in the Dead Sea. It is a barren place. It’s named the Dead Sea for a reason—everything around it is dead.
Now get this. The water that goes into the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea is the same water. It comes from the mountain heights of Herman and the Cedars of Lebanon. It flows down to the mountains and is life-giving. But the end result is on the opposite end of the life spectrum.
The Sea of Galilee is a giver. The water that flows into it, it passes on. The richness of the water fertilizes the Jordan plane. It has outlets in order to share life-giving nutrients to other parts of Israel. It is not there to get as much as it is to give.
The Dead Sea has no outlet. When the water comes down to it, it simply keeps the water without sending it on to share it and therefore, becomes salty and polluted. Its practice is to get and keep—and therefore, it produces death.
The Sea of Galilee takes the water and makes beauty and life. It exists in order to pass the water on to other parts of Israel. It is alive because it does not exist in order to get and keep what it can, but in order to receive and give to bring life full of fish, birds, and trees.
Nothing can live in the Dead Sea because it has no outlet to pass its water on to be used elsewhere. It keeps it in the Dead Sea and creates a situation that will become stagnant and polluted and carry the stench of death.
Proverbs 21:25 says, “The greedy only wants to get. The Godly only wants to give.” The difference in greed and Godliness lies in either getting and keeping or receiving and giving.
There are four special days designated at the end of November. They are Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday. When you look at those four days, number one and number four are the most important. More people might participate in Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but the real joy of the season goes to the ones who participate in Thanksgiving Day and Giving Tuesday!
Where are you today? Do you really want to spend your time in the Dead Sea or enjoy the life of the Sea of Galilee? It’s your choice.