Monday, November 15, 2010

mission: give {week 2}

"One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the LORD,
         And He will repay him for his good deed."
-Proverbs 19:17 NASB

get caught up! read here how i gave during week 1 of the 30 Day Giving Challenge.

Day 8: today's give was easy. a [new] friend was in need of a babysitter. there were plenty of reasons i could have said no, but i did not hesitate to say yes. and honestly, this shouldn't even qualify as MY give. in babysitting her sweet girls, she gave me playmates for the day for each of my children, and the opportunity to experience first-hand what it's like to have 4 children. when she picked her girls up later that afternoon, i felt like thanking her. my favorite kind of give.

Day 9: today i helped a friend who is raising money to adopt a baby from Ethiopia. she is having a garage sale fundraiser and i am donating some home goods, and she also has a fundraiser through Just Love Coffee, where i plan to buy a few Christmas gifts for coffee lovers!

Day 10: you know what's hard to give but easy to give? someone a break. today at the mall food court there were 2 cash registers open and both ladies operating the cash registers were new. their namebadge said in big bold letters "IN TRAINING" but there was no trainee in sight helping them. when it was my turn in line, i placed my very simple order. the young lady working the cash register figured out how to punch my order in but didn't look so sure of herself. when i paid, something in the computer went awry. my order was lost. she needed the manager. there were 4 impatient people in line behind me. Bubba was squirming on my hip. i could have rolled my eyes, shook my head, or sighed heavily. "remember the giving challenge," i heard in my heart. "give her a break." i smiled at her. said something light to make her laugh. i set Bubba on the counter and made him do something cute so the people in line behind me would focus on him and lighten up. i literally saw the relief come over the young cashier in training. simply by giving her a break.
Day 11: today i donated to the Arlington Pregnancy Center. this is one of my favorite local organizations. they have a resale shop full of donated clothing and house wares and proceeds go to help provide no-cost medical, education and counseling services to pregnant women in need.

Day 12: we packed our Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes at MOPS this morning. my task as Small Group Leader was to provide one gift-wrapped box and the $7, and my 5 group members would fill our box with gifts. but Operation Christmas Child means so much to me, i couldn't stop there. i filled another box with gifts for another child. i also gave up my close parking spot at Wal-Mart to another car who seemed to be in a bigger hurry.

Day 13: today i sent 2 of my friends boxes of Kleenexes in the Softness Worth Sharing campaign, with a note that says "Kleenexes are like friends: always good to have around." i hope it makes them smile to get a box of Kleenex in the mailbox.

Day 14: today on my regular trip to the grocery store i picked up extra canned goods and nonperishable pantry items for a food drive benefiting the North Texas Food Bank, which provides food and services to the hungry in 13 North Texas counties. with each can i put in my basket, i thought about the child who would eventually be served that very food, possibly the first meal he's had in weeks. i imagined my own children at their very hungriest, and i imagined not being able to feed them. i shivered with sadness. i prayed right there in the canned vegetables aisle that God would work a miracle with my canned goods, just like He did when he miraculously fed thousands with a small basket of fish and bread.

in the past 2 weeks God has shown me several ways to bless others besides spending money. it brings me complete joy to know that by serving others i am serving Him. i'm looking forward to another week of giving opportunities!