Reflections on “Have to” versus “Get to”

The Everything is Gift spiritual discipline campaign launches on Thanksgiving Day! Get ready to change your language and open yourself to the possibility of greater joy. Click the link for details about the spiritual discipline. And leave a comment for me if you’ll be participating!

gift box

Photo by sparkieblues. Used in accordance with Creative Commons.

The book of daily reflections for this campaign is closer to being finished. Here’s some of what I’m realizing as I put together this resource for you:

First, I’m realizing just how many situations there are in our lives to which we say “I have to”. Household chores, work tasks, even our spiritual lives. It makes me wonder: just how much do we constrain and burden ourselves without even knowing it?

Second, I’m realizing how immense the freedom we have in Christ is. If everything is truly a gift from God, then I am not bound, but free. Even getting a taste of how much freedom we have in Christ leaves me in awe.

Let me also give you a sneak peek at one of the reflections in the book, just to whet your appitite:

“I get to argue with my wife today!” “I get to fire an employee today!” “I get to go to the hospital to talk with the doctor about my cancer!”

You probably read those statements and thought I had lost my mind. Nobody talks like that. Those conversations are hard. No one enjoys them.

Today, I’m challenging you to see hard conversations as gifts. Yes, they may feel like white elephant gifts, like the ugly sweater or the useless kitchen appliance. But I’m of the opinion that they are incredible gifts if you’ll take the time to look.

What’s the gift, you may ask? Simply this: you get to live in true relationship with another person. You get the opportunity to see the truth about this person and to see the truth about yourself. You get to break through illusions, facades, and masks and see each other as you truly are.

Is that a gift? Sadly, most won’t see it that way. They’d rather live in illusion than in truth because illusion is much more comfortable and orderly. How about for you?

What hard conversation do you get to have today? How can you see it as a gift?

There you have it! Hope you’ll join me when this campaign starts one week from today! Sign up for my mailing list in the top right corner and you’ll receive a download link to the book of daily reflections as soon as it’s ready.

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Continue the conversation here! Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Alister Scott Uy

    Thanks Andrew. Great insight. Short and Sweet. I get it!

    • andrewcyee

      Thanks for the encouragement, Scott!

  • I would offer, “choose to”….you don’t have to do anything…you are choosing to. Stop passing the responsibility of your choice to someone else…you are choosing to do whatever it is you do so own it. Great post andrew

    • andrewcyee

      David, you’re so right on with “choose to”. We have so much responsibility for our own choices, and so often we give it up, many times without even thinking about it.