Giving by Taking

This week, I had fellowship with one of my friends on campus. This is her second year being part of Christians on Campus at UT. We were reminiscing how the Lord had been very faithful to bring us back to Himself. I don't have the liberty to share with you her story, but she shared with me from Psalm 116:12-13. There's a short hymn written based on this psalm (click here to listen to the tune):
"What I shall I give unto the Lord
 For all, for all, for all He's done for me?
I'll take the cup of salvation, 
And call, and call, and call upon the name of the Lord."
When my friend was younger, an older Christian spoke to her concerning this hymn. He pointed out how the psalmist began by asking what shall he give unto the Lord to return all the goodness, all that He had done for him, but ended with taking the cup of salvation and calling upon the name of the Lord. 

In one of my previous posts on God's salvation to us, I shared a similar experience. Many times after acknowledging and recognizing all that the the Lord has done for us, we would like to return His favor by giving something, doing something for Him. To know merciful and graceful the Lord is, of course, a divine revelation, yet to know who we really are is part of that revelation. 

In Psalm 116:12-13, the psalmist asks what he shall give unto the Lord for all that He has done for him but then he realizes the best he can give is to take what the Lord has done, the cup of salvation, and to call upon His name. Actually his calling is also another taking, another receiving. We usually call someone because we are in need of that person. In the same manner, our calling upon the Lord's name is our needing Him to come into us, our receiving of His presence, our taking of His person.

Today I'm reminded again, the best I can give unto the Lord is to simply take all that He has done and all that He is. "Lord, I' take the cup of salvation and call upon Your name. O Lord Jesus, come into me, come into my day. You are my daily salvation."


  1. Thanks Katherine! I love this passage too. It reminds me of a favorite Watchman Nee quote-

    "It is a grief to the heart of God when we try to give things to Him, because He is so rich. It is a joy when we simply allow Him to give and give to us. It grieves Him when we try to do things for Him, because He is so able. He longs for us to simply allow Him to do everything. He wants to be the Giver and the Doer eternally. If only we saw how rich and how great He is, we would leave all the giving and doing to Him."

  2. Wow, that's such an awesome quote! Thanks for sharing, Kyle. It's beyond our natural concept, but that's how our salvation begins anyway. It all began with regeneration, our receiving Christ into us.


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