A relationship between animals of different species in which one benefits and the other receives nothing.
Is there such a thing as giving too much?
My life, especially in the last two years, has been defined by giving.
I would give anything for the people I love.
And I have given a lot.
I’ve given ridiculous things.
Presents, gifts, money.
But I’ve also given a lot of myself.
My time. My energy. My effort. My prayers.
I’ve spent the last two years of my life, giving, giving, giving.
I spend 90% of my time with or for people.
If I’m not physically with people, I’m talking to them.
Always in communication, with someone.
For a purpose.
I think “I need to text her, she’s having a bad day.”
Or, “I need to talk to her, her boyfriend broke up with her.”
Or asking people “What can I pray for, for you?”
Or listening to people tell their story.
Always hoping for the best in the people.
And doing whatever I can to push them in the right direction.
I am drawn to people.
To help them.
To love them.
God gave me a big heart.
A big capacity to love.
I’ve always felt like I need to use it.
But lately, it’s occurred to me, that I’m getting nothing back.
And sometimes, that’s ok.
I’m not loving people so they’ll love me.
That’s not my point.
I’m talking about my friends.
“Friends are the family you make for yourself.”
That’s more true for me than it is for most.
I trust my friends.
And I depend on them.
I tell them things that scare me to say.
I share things with them that hurt.
B/c I trust them.
And that’s saying a lot.
Trusting doesn’t come easy for me.
I love them. More than they’ll ever know.
But I heard about commencialism in class today.
My teacher talked about how this one bird cleans the teeth of the alligator.
And in return, the alligator doesn’t eat the bird.
The bird cleans.
The alligator does nothing.
The alligator benefits from the bird.
But does nothing in return.
Sometimes, I think I am the bird.
I would literally do anything in the world for my friends.
But is that true the other way around?
I’m always giving to them.
And yet, what am I getting?
Besides disappointment and hurt.
And feelings of rejection.
And the realization that no matter what,
I’ll always love more than I am loved in return.
I’ll care more.
I’ll give more.
And I’ll always get less.
But somewhere along this train of thought, I understood.
That when you’re following Christ, its not called commencialism.
Its called love.
And its what being a Christian is all about.
John 15:13 has no end clause.
“Greater love has no man than this, that he lay his life down for his friend.”
Not “that friends lay their lives down for each other and in return receive gratitude and love”.
Its not about what I get.
Its doesn’t matter that I feel empty at the end of the day b/c I’ve poured myself out to the people in my life.
It doesn’t matter if my friends don’t understand.
Or don’t try to understand.
I am the bird.
And I will keep cleaning.
No matter what I get in return.
Even if its nothing.
And if ever I feel hurt or rejected or alone,
I will remember, another example of commensialsm.
One that takes place on a cross.
And I’ll realize that loving people isn’t easy.
And it takes sacrifice.
And sometime, it sucks and I just want to yell.
But then I remember,
I’m also the alligator.
Reaping the benefits from a relationship I could never deserve.
And oftentimes, doing nothing in return.
So, to answer my own question,
No, I don’t think there’s such a thing as giving too much.
But if there was, it has nothing to do with me.
It happened 2000 years ago at Gethsemane.