“Don’t dish it out if you can’t take it!” Have you ever heard that or some variation of this sentiment before, or better yet has anyone ever said that to you? I (Mia) don't really have a problem with "taking it", but please don’t fact check this with my husband. In my defense, I only use the pouty lip as a tool of self-expression and creativity, not weakness.
I’ve learned over the years through life experiences (and the music industry) to grow a pretty thick skin and not take critique and opinions too personally. As a friend once said to me “let it roll, like water off the back of a duck.” So when things come at me, I repeat the words “water off the back of a duck, water off the back of the duck” and then I tend to waddle on.
What I do have a more difficult time with is this “You can take it, but you can’t dish it out!” This reversal of the old saying in my life is referring to GRACE.
I can take all the grace people are willing to give, but when it comes to extending that grace to others when they repeatedly irritate me, repeatedly say the rudest things and continually get under my skin, finding the grace in those situations tends to come a bit more slowly. Those are the times when I need to dig a little deeper and dish out what has so generously been served to me.
Do I do this perfectly every time? No, but ironically that’s when I need His grace even more in order to extend it. It’s a never- ending cycle. Dish it up and serve it out.
Are you anything like me? Do you struggle to show grace to the people that need it most. Not the ones where it comes easily, but to the ones that challenge you, push your buttons, take more than they give….you know, the ones that downright get on your LAST nerve?
The reality is that there are times when I am THAT person. There are times when YOU are that person too. In those times, I am glad that people chose to show me grace so that I could learn to show grace to others.
May I challenge you today, to serve grace. Set it out on a beautiful platter and enjoy the feast. Your preparation of this main course may just teach someone else how to cook, how to dish it out and how to take it in.
“But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.” Acts 20:24 (ESV)
Love you in the Lord, Mia