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Saturday, December 12, 2009

Give Freely Part II

The other day I talked about giving freely of our stuff. Today I want to talk about giving freely of our time. This is the one where I fall short. I have great ideas and good intentions (or paving stones, if you catch my drift), but I forget, I'm afraid, I'm lazy, I'm any other excuse you choose.

Is the problem that I forget? Do I intend to do things that just aren't right for me? Do I overschedule the rest of my life? I've taken a spiritual inventory, but I think I need to take a practical one. I have abilities in many areas, but what can I actually fit into my life? I spend a lot of time on the computer for various reasons...is there something I can do on the internet or in Microsoft Office? I run clothes to Wheat's Silo already...can I make a couple other stops on the way? (I did add Crisis Nursery to my run, by the way, when I asked myself this question.) I already collect food for our local food bank...can I find new sources for the food? (This one made me ask my moms group, and I got a few donations!) Is there some way for me to contribute without doing all the legwork myself...do I have friends or family already contributing their time to a cause? (A friend collects labels and box tops for education and has even offered to send me an envelope each quarter! I refused, of course, and will send them to her with my own supplies.) Do I have to lead the CROP Walk for my church or can I help find a leader? Do I have to work in a soup kitchen or can I offer to organize volunteers to work? Additionally, it is clear to me that I need to schedule these activities so that I can't forget or plan over them.

My challenge to you is to first take a spiritual inventory of your gifts to narrow down your possibilities. Then, consider your talents and abilities and availability. What one thing can you do this month that helps someone else? Can you pick up groceries for an elderly relative or even just sit for a bit and chat? Can you collect pop tops at work for the Ronald McDonald House? Can you call your friends to ask if they could donate books to your niece's school's book drive?

I'd love to hear what you decide!

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