Confessions of a “Receiving” Addict

by Jason on February 1, 2010

Confession time!

I’m not as generous as I should or could be!

Here’s another thing: I like to receive more than I like to give.

Why?  Well, because it’s inherent and I’m selfish.

I know what you’re thinking –

“Wait a minute – but you write about generosity and giving and doing good things with your money”

That’s true.  And I believe strongly in everything I write.

But, there’s a disconnect.  Part of me loves to hold on to my stuff, hoard it and use it for me.

It’s like I’m addicted to my own selfish desires.

I don’t want to be selfish, but I find myself slipping into selfish mode so easily.

How?  Well, it shows in various ways including marriage, other relationships, my money, my time etc.  And if we were all brutally honest – we’d probably come to the same conclusion.

I always tell people that I never realized how selfish I was until I got married and had to start putting my wife’s needs above my own.  After that I never realized how much selfishness there still was in my heart until I had kids and I had to put their needs above my own.

In terms of money, I like to hold on to my money for comfort and security.  I like to put my trust in my savings accounts rather than God himself.  I like to view the money I have as mine rather than God’s.  I don’t like to think of myself as a steward, I like to think of myself as owner.

But here’s the thing – I want to be totally unselfish, completely generous and not care an ounce about my status or my wealth, but it’s hard not to – especially in this culture.

But – as one of my favorite songs says:

To give unselfishly, to love the least of these
Jesus I’m learning how to live with open hands
All of these treasures that I hold will never satisfy my soul
Jesus I lay it at your throne with open hands

How to overcome your self

So how do we overcome our selfish desires for money, fame, status, power or even the praise of men?

Well the first thing we need to realize is the fact that we are selfish and come to terms with that fact.

The second thing we need to realize is that it’s a process and there is a big learning curve.  It takes time.

The third thing is to recognize how GREAT our heavenly treasure and that our earthly treasures pale in comparison.

The treasure of Christ far outweighs our earthly goods.  But so often we have blinders on.  Ask God to help you see the greatness of Christ displayed in the gospel.

I’m learning, baby-step by baby-step – but the process is a good one.

Agree or disagree?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on whether this is a struggle for you or if you think I’m off my rocker!

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