The Challenge of Receiving

There is a phrase you hear a lot that goes: “Believing is Receiving.” Basically, the idea is that if you believe enough you will receive what you need and long for. All my life I have put the emphasis on the believing. 

Believe enough.  Believe more.  Believe. Believe. Believe.

Today I realized that I have spent so much time on believing that I totally ignored the “receive” part. After all, receiving is easy, right?  Things appear. You receive them.

Not so much.  

In the human heart and mind, “receiving” is a many-headed monster.  Depending on how you were raised, receiving is often fraught with danger.

In my family, receiving must always be preceded by hard work.  Anything offered out of the goodness of someone’s heart or anything given out of admiration for a skill or talent must be viewed with suspicion. And of course, any achievement that comes easily must be completely discounted.  

Ever heard the phrase, “That was too easy.”? 


In school, when I received excellent test scores, I was either given extra work “to keep me busy” or ignored because I “didn’t need help”.

At church I was often reminded that receiving wealth for your God-given gifts is evil, or at best, a treacherous path.

Clearly, I have a few issues with receiving.  But until today, I thought the issue was in believing.  

The reality is, though, you can believe all day. You can believe until the cows come home.  But if you think the receiving prosperity or love or recognition, or whatever, is bad, YOU WILL NOT RECEIVE THEM.

In my case, amazing things can be sitting right in front of me begging to be gathered up, and I will refuse to pick them up because…

Because why?

Because I don’t “deserve” them?  Because I didn’t work hard enough?  Because I might be corrupted?  Because I can’t be trusted with such bounty?



I don’t know.  

All of the above, probably. 

Here’s the real truth: I don’t have to continue letting that story play in my head.  I don’t have to continue to walk around with shackles on my hands, refusing to pick up what God has put in my path to bless me.  

Those shackles are man-made.  In many cases, those shackles are ME-made.  And I don’t have to live in that bondage any more.

So if you have struggled with receiving I would love to hear your story.  If you have had to break through old thought and belief patterns in order to gather in what the Universe is sending you, please tell me your secrets. 

I am ready to receive.