FOR ME, newsletters and podcasts are an important part of my development and inspiration.  So a column today by Richard Rohr caught my eye.  In it, he states:

Spiritual gifts increase only by using them.

This brings together a whole lot of thoughts I have around the nature of love, of giving, of support.

Love isn’t something which can be kept to myself – it becomes love through the act of sharing.  And by being exercised, it increases.  So it’s not like you can “give away all your love.”  Indeed, your reserves increase the more you share.

Likewise, we usually focus on giving being the stuff that’s transferred from one person to another.  If I give you a dollar, then that’s a dollar that I no longer have.

But in fact, that stuff is just incidental to the nature of giving.  The deeper value is in building goodwill between the giver and the recipient – both directions!  It’s in developing the philosophy of generosity and gratitude.  Both of those are not limited, and can be expanded to any degree.

In a similar way, giving support may “use up” some resources I suppose.  But that’s incidental to the underlying spiritual gifts of generosity and encouragement.  And the recipient of that support gets to expand the gifts of acceptance, humility, and gratitude.

We all need to develop our spiritual gifts of love, goodwill, generosity, gratitude, acceptance, encouragement, and humility.  Fortunately, we’re given an infinite supply, so we don’t have to hoard them away from other people.

And, in fact, the act of using these gifts makes them stronger, in ourselves, and everyone we touch.