Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Endings are such a good time for reflection. In the midst of a whirlwind week of packing, cleaning, organizing and rearranging the house, getting together with friends whom I won't see again for a while, and finishing up at work, I find myself pondering the things about life that seem to become more obvious in retrospect.

One realization is just how blessed I am to have so many people who love me and whom I love. I HATE saying goodbyes, but sometimes goodbyes cause me to value my loved ones even more than I usually do.

I remember when I realized a couple years ago that loving and hurting go hand in hand; if you love someone, you are signing up to be disappointed and hurt--no matter how much the other person wants to avoid disappointing or hurting you. There just is no way that another human can possibly do the right thing every time, or meet all of your expectations--and ultimately, there are painful goodbyes involved, too. True love always involves sacrifice; to love someone is to commit to give of yourself and to put the other person's interests ahead of your own.

Why is it, then, that giving of oneself seems to result in overflowing richness? Why is it that as I look back at the relationships I've had with people around me, I feel most enriched by the people to whom I gave the most of myself, my time, my prayers and sympathy? You might say that they cost me the most, but now I feel more enriched by them than by those whom I only loved as far as it was easy.

And when I remember the times that I refused to demonstrate love, deciding to spare myself the sacrifice, I remember them as times of poverty--poverty of joy and fulfillment and peace. When I chose to keep for myself, I was impoverished; when I chose to give, I was enriched.

These years could have been a lot easier. But, except for the times when my selfish decisions got in the way, they could not have been more blessed.

Perhaps this is the secret behind Jesus' words, "It is more blessed to give than to receive." (Acts 20:35)


  1. Hi Rachel,

    Thanks for encouraging our daughter, Leah Good. She has you on her new blog roll which I was checking out. She misses your posts.

    In Him,

    Ken Good

    1. Thank you, Mr. Good! You're helping to inspire me to start posting again... :)