this past trip to Kenya has taught me much. the greatest lesson i learned was the power of “receiving”. i have been in such a state of driving these past few years that i have lost my way in other areas of my life. one of those areas of loss has been in receiving freely the gift of others and of myself. i keep on pushing to grow, to reach the next level that i have lost sight of receiving all that the present has to offer.
i could not be more grateful to my friend Jim McDermott and for the late great author and mentor, Henri J.M. Nouwen…thank you for opening your hearts so that mine may be opened.
a few excerpts from Nouwen’s book, “The Inner Voice of Love” that i have been reading daily while in Kenya:
“Giving yourself to others without expecting anything in return is only possible when you have been fully received. Every time you discover that you expect something in return for what you have given or are disappointed when nothing comes back to you, you are being made aware that you yourself are not yet fully received. Giving without wanting anything in return is trusting that all your needs will be provided for by the One who loves you unconditionally. You cannot give yourself to others if you do not own yourself, and you can only truly own yourself when you have been fully received in unconditional love.
A lot of giving and receiving has a violent quality, because the givers and receivers act more out of need than out of trust. What looks like generosity is actually manipulation, and what looks like love is really a cry for affection or support. When you know yourself as fully loved, you will be able to give according to the other’s capacity to receive, and you will be able to receive according to the other’s capacity to give. You will be a free person, free to love.”
Here’s to “receiving” and to learning how to love freely!