28. Giver Prayer: Joy in Community


Givers are an interesting paradox when it comes to joy in the community.

Broadly speaking, Giver institutions and cities are not intrinsically joyful.  Take NYC for example.  I don’t think of bubbly, ebullient people on the street when I think of NYC or any Giver region or nation.

When you drill down from the macro to the individual, the Giver is also not very prone to enjoying his own joy in any sort of flamboyant, corporate way.

The flip side, though, is that the mature Giver usually finds great delight in helping others enjoy their joy.  The maternal Giver will be deeply vested in each of the formal and informal rites of passage for her kids.  She finds her joy in empowering them to enjoy their joy, while the mom stays more in the background.

Even if the Giver did not directly support the celebratory event, he or she will usually find significant pleasure in sitting at the edge of the action, savoring the fact that their community is experiencing the joys of life.

This is a picture of the mature Giver.  By contrast, the wounded Giver will often have pernicious jealousy of anyone else who has great joy and will sabotage that joy in sundry ways.  Thus the beauty of the well anchored Giver, empowering the celebrations of others, shines even brighter against the backdrop of celebrations stained by the wounded, hurtful Giver.

Consider these dynamics in Abraham.  He had abundance and could enjoy his joy endlessly.  However, his remonstrance to God was that he found no pleasure in enjoying his own joy, but would find vast joy in enjoying the joy of a son.

And in fact, when Isaac’s second rite of passage came about, Abraham the Giver threw such a huge party for the kid – who ironically wasn’t enjoying any joy that day! – that it changed all of human history because of the jealousy that was unleashed toward Isaac by Ishmael and continues malevolently to this day.

With that portrait in mind, read the entire book of Matthew and notice how often the Giver dwelt at length on the rites of passage and other key transitions.  The visit of the Magi, the baptism of Christ, His temptation and entrance into ministry are heavily documented in a celebratory form by Matthew.

Going forward you see major events in the history of the Twelve documented more carefully by Matthew, than the other evangelists:  the call of the Twleve; their being sent out on their first mission; the history-making transition from chapter 12 to chapter 13 where He began to share parables.

Then Matthew meticulously documents the various times Christ announced His impending death and resurrection – history’s ultimate rite of passage – to the disciples-in-denial!

Throughout the whole of the book, Matthew rarely mentions himself.  But with a Giver’s keen eye for the pivotal transitions and informal rites of passage, he frames the story of the Messiah as only a Giver can – capturing the joy of community at critical junctures.

And God liked it so much, He anchored the New Testament in the Giver’s perspective of joy in the community.

That says a lot for how much God enjoys watching Givers enjoying the joy of their community when it is at a place of great joy.

28.  Giver Prayer:  Joy in Community                                            Redemptive Gift of New York

Copyright June 2016 by Arthur Burk

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7 Responses to 28. Giver Prayer: Joy in Community

  1. Basil says:

    Good day, My name is Basil Wood,
    I have been introduced to “Arthur Burk” by two different folk from our church.
    I happened upon the use of “Giver tribe”. Following through I am reading backwards from 32. now on 28.
    Would you please be so kind as to direct me to the coming into being of the Giver tribe.
    Some how it resonates with me, so I am eager to learn more. While I wait for a reply I shall continue reading 27 ..26 etc

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    • SLG says:

      Hi Basil. Our model suggests that there are seven different “tribes” God has created in the spectrum of humanity. This teaching is found in our album “Redemptive Gifts of Individuals.”

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  2. katshea says:

    I never would have associated Givers with Rites of Passage. But if (mature) Givers find and supply both tangible and intangible resources with precise timing, of course a Rite of Passage would be a special sphere of Giver’s gifts.

    So. . .Rites of Passage as I understand them, include a phase of equipping and empowerment, a major test of applying those life lessons, and a formal (sometimes) receiving of the person at a new level of maturity back into the tribe.

    It is the gift of mentoring and the honor, dignity, legitimacy, identity that comes with a fulfillment of a developmental task. This is everything you have been imparting to the believers on the epic journey to experientially know the high calling in Christ Jesus. It is so much more than we know so far!

    I believe every healing is a Rite of Passage, every lurch forward, every paradigm shift, but they are mostly private. Somehow the ‘Rite’ gives a communal celebration to the major milestones in the process of maturing and becoming the Christ in us, the hope of GLORY. I am so in favor of developing new celebrations that are actually deeply meaningful and symbolic of our life in Christ!

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  3. Heidi Colquhoun says:

    My mom is a 91 year old, wounded Giver. My sisters and I have been so frustrated with her negativity . Now at last I have some insight into her toxic behavior. We are helping her find her way in community with the insights you have been providing. She has just gone into assisted living and with encouragement from us, has found her nitch making other sad elderly people find humor in little things. My not sound like much, but to us, it’s wonderful, and it gives her a reason to wake up in the morning. Thanks for all you do Arthur, you and your team!

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  4. Mary Okkema says:

    Thank you for helping us pray for and encourage our closest Giver(s).
    Also, thank you for the reminder that Matthew was a Giver. I am currently reading through that book. It gives another dimension to understanding the what and why in his writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Janis Leal says:

    Beautiful. Very interesting. So very enlightening. Now I get it… at least some. And all of it together, the article and the audios, draws out of the ashes the roses of beauty, sparks out of the dimness the sparks of hope. Powerful. Thank You, Lord, and “thank you” more than words.

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  6. Hanna says:

    VERY, very, very beautiful! Wow! The design how God created it, is simply a MASTERpiece!
    I celebrate the Creator and His masterpiece! Thank you for this beautiful description.

    Liked by 1 person

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