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Giving and Receiving Are the Same

Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them …

— Matthew 7:12

We give only what we have.

— The Science of Mind, page 368

Giving and Receiving Are the Same

A young woman complained, “Why doesn’t anyone listen to me? I try to tell people how I’m suffering, but no one wants to listen!” Later a change came over her and she decided to stop complaining and talking about herself all the time. She decided to listen to what others had to say. To her utter amazement, the more she listened, the more she felt her heart fill with love and compassion, until at last she realized that she had always possessed the key to her own happiness.

Another young woman lost a husband and young son within a six-month period. At first she was in a state of shock but after a month or two she decided to “forget” by burying herself in good works. She volunteered at the local hospital, nursery schools, senior citizen’s groups, and any place she could find that would accept her services. Day by day she became more and more involved with life and saw that there were many souls who needed her love and help. Her wound healed.

Try the following experiment the next time you feel lonely or depressed or unloved. Go spend time with someone who rarely receives visitors. Both of you will reap the harvest.

And then you will be able to sing with St. Francis of Assisi: “O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love; for it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned.

I turn my attention from myself and focus the lens of my soul upon another.

I splice out the phrases “I need” and “l want” from

my vocabulary and I zoom in on what I can give.

I seek first the kingdom of heaven and all else shall follow.

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