What are you giving back as a result of what you’ve been given?

TD Jakes did a 3 part series recently on commitment that had a profound impact on my life. You can listen to those messages here. In the messages, he talked a lot about reciprocity. The focus was on giving back to what’s been given to you. The reality is, we can go through life and enjoy everything that has been given to us and give absolutely nothing back in return. That’s not right. Part of growing up is realizing how good we have it in our lives and that we have a responsibility to give back.

Here are a few areas of life for you to really think about whether or not you are just taking advantage of everything that’s been given to you or if you are investing in each of these areas to make them better for everyone:

Family – Are we honoring our parents and grandparents? They took care of us while we were hopeless! They wiped our butts, fed us, spent time with us, created memories for us, and got us to a stage of independence.They may not have done the job we think they ought to, but they did the best they could with what they knew. Make it a focus in your life to give back to your family, without them, you wouldn’t be here!

Church – If you go to a good church that has changed your life, you’ve probably benefited from great sermons, great small groups, great classes, a great building, youth program, children’s program, etc. Were you a part of making all of those things possible? Because someone was! People sweat blood, cried, worked extremely hard, and made incredible sacrifices to make your church what it is today. Do you give back to the church through your finances, time, and talent or do you just keep reaping where others have sown?

Work – You have a job today because others have made your company what it is today. They pay you! Are you giving back your best as a result of what’s been given to you or are you taking it for granted and collecting a paycheck?

Friendships/Mentors – Have you benefited from others being great friends or mentors? If so, are you giving back? Are you being a great friend and a mentor to others? Have you honored those who have invested in you? Have you given back to them?

Our Cities, State, Nation and World – The world we live in is a world that was created by the men and women in the past. We didn’t have to do a lot to benefit from the world they helped create. Are we just going to continue to reap where we have not sown or will we do something with the world in front of us to honor those who have made the world what it is and make it better for those who will experience it in the future?

God – Jesus laid down His life for you. He gave it all for you. You didn’t have to do anything to earn a relationship with God. The question is, what are you going to give back to Him for what He’s given to you? My friend, Ben Rath, made the statement the other day that, “God’s purpose for your life is for you to use your life for His purposes.” That’s a fact. However, we have to choose to give our lives to and for Him, it’s not something he makes us to. Let’s give God everything because He gave everything for us!

In every area of life, what are you giving back as a result of what you’ve been given?


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TD Jakes



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