Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Object Lessons

For the most part, I like object lessons. 

As a teaching tool, they are a nice diversion from lecturing. 

As a student, many have had a positive impact on me and they are learning moments I've retained.

The object lesson I've been thinking about lately is about give and take.  Or, give and receive.

The objects in this particular lesson include a cup of water for each family member. The water represents service, love, acts of kindness, gifts, or things we do for each other.

Dad, our hero,  goes to work each day which enables us to have food, clothing, shelter, transportation and opportunities to make memories doing fun things.  A little bit of water from Dad's cup is poured into each family members cup, representing his love and service to our family.

Mom, well Mom does a lot.... shopping, meal preparation, teaching moments, help with homework, laundry, housework (and teaching us how to do these same chores, hopefully), transportation and the list goes on, and on and on.  Sometimes this includes everything on this list and more and working outside the home.  Water goes from Mom's cup to everyone else's cup, representing the love she has for us and the service she extends to us each day.

Children, most often the recipients of others water, also share their love and service when they help with the chores, help with younger siblings, give Mom and Dad hugs, are obedient to family rules and assignments, clean up after themselves, help with meals and show love and kindness to family members.

Hopefully you get the idea.

I enjoy sharing my water with others.  Especially my family.

My wifely responsibilities enable me to share my water with my sweet husband.  The husbandly responsibilities he assumes refills my cup.  The bounteous blessing I receive each day from my Father in Heaven enable me to serve and share with others.

For the most part, our children and grandchildren share their water with us, too.

Although my goal is to have water constantly flowing to and from my cup, some areas of my ever flowing cup are parched.

Worrying about the parched areas and trying in vain to share seem to have created a drought.

  • When you feel like you've given all you have to share, receiving nothing in return, where do find more to continue sharing?

Obviously, we don't give to receive.  I don't, anyway. 

My giving comes from the heart. 

A heartfelt desire to create a moment in the recipients life to let them know I'm thinking about them, that I love them and/or more simply, I just want to reach out to them.  Sometimes my sharing stems from a desire to be helpful.

There have been so many people in my life  - my Mother, Father and sisters being the best at sharing with me,  - who have extended the same thoughtful acts of sharing and kindness, how can I not share?

From my perspective, to keep the water flowing freely, life has to be a give and take proposition. 

Or give and receive...

Forgiveness, tolerance, acceptance... I believe each of these elements must be part of the give and receive recipe.

Sometimes I come up short on my ebb and flow.  Never intentionally. 

Some of my relationships feel like a one-way street,  Not the give and receive of a two-way street.

  • Don't you just love, love, love my double and triple analogy combinations?       Cups, recipes, streets!
In my constant state of self-analysis... it's obvious I'm missing the mark on some cups. However, without feedback, or even a polite acknowledgement of my efforts, how can I make corrections and improve?

When I feel this parched, I'm inclined to go where the water is flowing freely and receive reserves from those who freely give.

Feeling weary! 

Not feeling groovy!

1 comment:

Heather said...

I think in lots of relationships we get to feeling this way sometimes: "Some of my relationships feel like a one-way street"
Sometimes all it needs is time to fix itself or better, more open communication. And even though it isnt working with that relationship at the moment, there is always hope (at least I like to think so) :)
Happy Mothers Day Weekend :)