“And He began teaching in their synagogues and was praised by all.” Luke 4:15 NASB
“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of it for anyone else.” Charles Dickens
It’s just as important to receive as to give. We know that it is more blessed to give than receive. Yes. When we give a good gift to our children, we feel so full. We volunteer and or give to a charity, we feel we’re part of a righteous cause. When we compliment another, it feels good to see their smile. Do you encourage your child’s primitive drawing? Frame it or place it on the refrigerator door? Don’t those little ones swell with pride and worth? When we validate another’s overcoming a tremendous hurdle, do you feel victorious with them? What tremendous feelings are experienced in the giving and receiving.
Now, how do we feel when the reverse it true? Do we “poo-poo” a compliment. Do we say, “It was nothing?” Do we change the subject? We’ve been taught to be humble. But is that humility? No. God wants us to receive and receive graciously. Sometimes, thank you is enough. Sometimes praise is warranted and I’ve heard people say that it was God at work in them. That’s true, but you participated in this with your heavenly father. You worked to do what the father is doing. We need to receive too. Let good things sink in. Learn to fill up your heart with good works. Embrace the accomplishment. Thank the father. We need to learn how to receive graciously the abundant gifts our father gives us.
Our father loves praise too. Specific praise, not just thanks for food, getting through another day, the clothes on our backs. How about thanks for the wonder of the universe? The smell of baking bread? The magnificence of his word? The wonderful works in the Bible that entertain little children and transform adults? The comfort of prayer—at any time, for any reason, unfiltered. These are some of mine and I know you have yours. They’re personal. Specific. Unique to you. Being specific with our father teaches us how to receive and how to give with true humility.
Even our savior was praised. He was praised by his heavenly father, our heavenly father and by all who were listening to his teaching in the synagogue. This little verse from Luke may be overlooked, but what a miracle! Praised by all. The listeners knew how to receive. They knew how to give.
In this wonderful season of giving, remind us of the treasure of giving, storing up treasure, which thieves do not break in and steal. Help us to receive, with great joy, the most miraculous treasure of all, Your Son.