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NWW Weekly Connection

January 7, 2024
Receiving is Giving

Back in 1997, New World Women Co-Founder Shawn Vougeot spent countless hours with exceptional (and exceptionally funny and kind) producer Karl Demer at Atomic K Productions (Minneapolis, MN) producing her debut album, Streets.

During many late nights in Karl’s studio, one of the songs they recorded, entitled “Searching the Streets,” was co-written and co-produced with multi-talented musician Mark Limburg.

Twenty-six years later, in December 2023, Shawn volunteered to help Karl with his biggest production of the year at the Mall of America: “KS95's 11th Annual Clouds Choir for a Cause" - an event that raises funds for the Zach Sobiech Osteosarcoma Fund.

A few days after this successful fundraising event, Shawn and Karl had a long text exchange about paying Shawn for her help. It went like this: "Shawn, do you have Zelle? What's the best way to pay you?"
Shawn replied, "I didn't know we were getting paid! Are you?" Karl replied "no." So Shawn pressed on about where the money would come from.

Many texts later, Karl still wanted to know what method to pay Shawn and Shawn didn't want to take Karl's money for her volunteer work. Trying to explain that she felt he had already paid her, Shawn sent a link to a performance from December 2018, when the three musicians who produced "Searching the Streets" back in 1997, joyously reunited on Mall of America's rotunda stage to perform "The Prayer." (Written by David Foster, Carole Bayer Sager, Alberto Testa and Tony Renis.)

Eventually, Shawn accepted one third of the payment and asked him to share the other two thirds with others. Clearly, Shawn and Karl had no problem giving, but both were mighty challenged with receiving!

What causes us to turn away from generosity? Have you ever found yourself doing some version of this?

When we reject goodness coming our way in one area of our lives, it may leak into others. Plus, our refusal to accept what others (and our Divine?) are trying to bless us with denies the joy that comes from giving.

In the end, we're happy that Shawn and Karl were finally able to graciously receive!

Let's open ourselves to receiving all the good that is making its way to us!

*To watch the December 2018 performance click on the image above.

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