Monday, August 22, 2005

Give and Take

You always talkin' bout what you give and don't have to give. But you take too. You take and you don't even realize that somebody else is givin'.

-- Fences, August Wilson

I just got a text message from AJones. I responded to his message with a call. AJones wanted to know if he could use me as a reference for some job he has been trying to get for the past year. Initially, my answer was yes. If he’d been trying to get the same job for the past year and he thought using my name as a reference would put him closer to his goal, go for it. Then I started thinking about the last time I got a call from AJones, and the time before that and the time before that. Every time he calls me it is because he wants something. He wants either resources or to use me as a resource. Whenever I called him, on those rare occasions, I call him to say hello and make sure he is in the land of the living. There is something uneven about this relationship and as a Libra constantly searching for balance I now find myself fed up. This small incident is an illustration of a larger issue.

AJones and his ex, The Other One , who called me two weeks ago for the same reason, are prime examples of people in my life who are solely takers and they aren’t the worse. I know some who will take until it hurts. I know a few who have taken from me while I was hurting. I can blame some of this on me. People can only take what I give and at times I know I give too much. But at what point should I just stop giving?

Oh, what a comely world is this when it envenoms him that bares it.

-- As You Like It, William Shakespeare

I suppose I need to examine why I give some people so much. Why are their some I feel like I should nurture even when they won’t, can’t or wouldn’t do the same for me? Maybe because I know that I am blessed and have been given much. Strangers of timely perfection have brightened my day, offered direction and even a hand.

To whom much is given, much is required.

-- Luke 12:48

But there must be an equal balance. I will only take so much. I can only give so much.