Lives in Farm Heroes Saga work slightly differently than in our other games.
To receive lives from friends, you'll need to be playing at the same time that your friends are. It works a little like an instant messenger in this respect, so you can send them to and from each other as you play the game.
If a friend sends you a life when you already have 5 lives, or if you're offline, then you'll receive magic beans instead. These can be used to buy shovel boosters, activate your Companions at the start of every level, or to multiply your score when playing those tricky Rancid the Raccoon levels.
As magic beans are crucial in order to use the Companions, and really helpful to buy shovels and increase your scores, we think this is a much better way to get that extra help in the form of gifts when your life meter is already full.