In the last year, I’ve noticed a difference in how people give to one another. Beyond giving a gift we all give something to others at some point: we give our time, our money, our support, and even our opinions.
While we mostly give material gifts, it’s often the non-material gifts that mean the most.
I’ve noticed it in myself as well as in others. Gift giving itself is not a bad thing, it’s likely been around as long as man has. It’s the intention behind the gift giving that could be slowing our awareness growth.
Many gifts have been given so that the giver’s ego is inflated versus giving in the true meaning of love. Many people spend beyond their financial means at Birthday and Christmas time. Credit cards are maxed as people feel the need to buy for everyone and they get what they want.
People are aware of the price but do not understand the value. I understand I live in a consumer society and our ‘worth’ is measured but what material objects we have. The fancy houses, fast cars, and the latest electronic gadget are objects, material things that do not last. What does last is giving from the heart.
There is a big difference between giving from the ego and giving from the spirit.
Giving from the ego is when you give a gift(material gift or non-material gift, it doesn’t matter) with the hidden agenda so satisfying an ego craving. An ego craving is when you want to be noticed because of the amount of money you spent on the gift, or how many gifts you gave. I have seen expensive gifts given when it was not the best gift to give but sure did make the giver look good. I’m talking about myself, I am guilty of ego giving.
Giving from the spirit is when you give a gift out of pure love, expecting nothing in return. You do your best in the gift giving process, picking a gift within your price range and what you feel the receiver will like. You don’t necessarily look for the priciest gift, but the gift that gives the receiver the most value. You will feel no need to brag about its price or how hard it was to find it to anyone. You will be content in the fact you did your best when picking out the gift.
How do you know when you are giving in spirit or giving in ego? It’s simple. Take a moment and see how you feel about the gift.
If it’s ego-centered giving the feelings will be about you. How you will look when the gift is given, bragging about its price or the fact you had to rush through three different malls to find it. Is the receiver going to know just how much you spent, that you went in debt? Are you going to look like you have more money than you actually do? Is it all about you?
Giving from the spirit is just the opposite. You give without any expectations. You give knowing you are giving from the heart. You are giving some of your love to the other person, whether they know it or not. You give with a big smile and a joyful heart overflowing with love.
I love the gift giving an experience like everyone else. It’s fun! Even though others may not understand yet what is truly valuable, it’s important you do and follow your own path. If you’re at this point in life than you will not take anything personally and know that you did your best.
This applies to non-material gifts also. Gifts like your time are not physical but have a far greater impact than a wrapped gift. I feel that giving your time is right up there with the greatest gifts because so many people see their time as the most valuable ‘thing’ in their life.
What would be even better than giving a gift, is to give your time. Does a seven-year need another video game? How about not buying a video game and spend the day at the park, playing a board game or a favorite sports activity?
Giving your time is giving yourself, the one thing that cannot be bought and wrapped but always open and full of love. Give from your spirit and you share in the love.