“The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” Proverbs 18:21 NIV
President Calvin Coolidge was a Giver, and he was legendary for being a man of few words. The story is told of the woman who sat next to him at a social gathering claiming to have made a bet that she could get more than three words out of him at dinner.
His response was, “You lose.”
While Givers are not uniformly the most loquacious tribe in community, you can tell a lot about them by what they say when they finally say it.
The wounded Giver is one of the most toxic people to be around. They generally have a fear based worldview and value security above all else. When someone shares a plan or a vision, they will often envision the worst case scenario and speak death over it, from a place of fear.
When a Giver embraces a lifestyle of being the Naysayer In Chief with their sound, the punishment the community dishes out is isolation. People edit themselves around the Giver, keeping all their hopes and dreams to themselves to avoid having the Giver spit on them. The Giver is left with the hollow shell of relationships, since people will not trust them with their hopes and dreams.
As demeaning and demoralizing as it is to be around a fear-driven Giver, the gift that a vibrant Giver brings to the community is vastly larger than the pain the wounded part of the tribe leaves behind.
I know of no tribe that can find a workaround for any barrier with as much skill as the Giver tribe. When you share your plan and its tight spots with a Giver, they can usually instantly find a way you have never seen to beat the system, solve the problem, get where you need to get and make progress.
The creative insight of Givers is unparalleled when it comes to finding a way forward with minimal resources.
Let’s say it a different way. The mature Giver does not suffer from powerlessness very often, and certainly does not indulge the perception of powerlessness at all.
This is so important because each time a Giver can find the workaround so the project can go forward, he or she is redeeming the mess the first Giver made.
My perception is that Eve was probably a Giver and when the devil created the illusion of future powerlessnes, she bit on his bait. In reality, she had incredible resources available, including a daily leadership coaching session with the Creator of the Universe.
Failure to value the resources she DID have caused her to reach for resources she didn’t need.
Against that backdrop, it generates deep emotions of worship in me when I watch the brilliance of the godly, mature Giver, solving business problems in ways I never would have thought possible.
But beyond solving problems and finding the workarounds, the Giver’s skill at upgrading the perfect plan is stunning.
I love sitting with a Giver and a Prophet, listening to the well honed perspective of the Prophet, laying out the vision and the plan which has been thought through for months or years. After the Prophet proves the thoroughness of his due diligence and the carefulness of his consideration, the Giver can usually, on the spot, improve upon the plan.
It is supernatural the way a Giver can digest information instantly that the Prophet assembled over months, and see a better way – in seconds.
So the sound of the Giver in community is often going to be high impact. Some speak death over much that comes from the heart of God. Others speak life and vitality over business plans, relationships and Kingdom vision.
Copyright May 2016 by Arthur Burk