Home Community Voices A Quick Recipe for Reciprocity

A Quick Recipe for Reciprocity

Have you ever tried to make a recipe with a recipe card? This could be the aged card that has a couple of caked fingerprints on it, written in your grandmother’s cursive. OR the (not so) quick Google search on “How to make ______”  spitting out 10 pages of words, ads, ads, ads, and a recipe hidden somewhere.


The point is, you’ve got all the instructions right there in front of you. How is it then that we still end up messing up the recipe? We’ve got the measurements and the method written out for us, yet we still fudge the fudge from time to time. That’s why Grandma is the only one who can make it the best, she’s been perfecting it the longest. A good recipe takes trial and time.

Reciprocity is a fancy word for “an exchange”. The first time I heard the word reciprocity, I was torn between attending two events in my life that felt equally important. These events were scheduled for the same weekend and it weighed very heavy on me which one I were to choose. It was a holy moment in time when one conversation changed my perspective on the golden rule.

Isn’t it powerful when we are caught off guard and transformed? Shoutout to God for divine intervention.

The Golden Rule

The golden rule goes like this: Treat others the way you want to be treated. Jesus teaches us about this rule in the books of Matthew 7 and Luke 6. A good read and encouragement to us all if you have the chance to check it out. Though similar to the recipe card, the golden rule is a lot easier said than done.

In my turmoil over which event to attend, I initially felt that I was going to ruin a relationship if I chose one over the other. Ever been there? Then happens this holy moment with a woman, whom I’d never met, mentioning the idea of reciprocity. My new friend too was in a similar situation of having to choose between two events, coinciding on the same weekend with people of equal importance to her.

In our mutual situation, we both chose to attend the event with the people who had shown the most reciprocity in our lives. We chose to attend the event with those who had “exchanged” kindness, love, and respect for us. We chose those who treated us the way we wanted to be treated.

Jesus Helps Us Refine the Recipe

When we make choices without Jesus in our lives, it’s more of a “hope for the best scenario”. When we make choices with Jesus in our lives, He offers a living hope that amplifies the outcome no matter what way the situation goes.

This idea of reciprocity (an exchange) mixed with the hope of Jesus, yields transformation. I’m thankful to say that I was able to have a constructive and honest conversation with those I chose not to see that weekend. Our relationship is stronger than it was before. As for the event I did attend, I’m thankful that I chose those who had chosen me, time and time again. We are still choosing to love each other well today.

The love Jesus offers helps us exchange our old habits for new ones. He rescues us from resentment and activates peace in place of where offense once lay. Treating others the way we want to be treated is a recipe we will more than likely fail if we try to do it without the right instructions. The gospels of Jesus is a good place to start.

Jesus wants our Bibles to be tattered and torn like our aged recipe cards. Our cookies may never taste quite like grandma’s do, and it may take us a whole lifetime to truly grasp the golden rule. Yet there is one thing we can rest in today, Jesus loves us more than we could ever imagine, and that love is accessible to us with a simple exchange.

Local Pulse Staff Writer & Holy Moments Columnist, Makenna Curtis