Luke 11:41 “……Turn both your pockets and your hearts inside out and give generously to the poor; then your lives will be clean, not just your dishes and your hands. ” (the message)
My family will be the first to tell you that housecleaning is not my strong suit. It’s not that my house is dirty. It’s just decorated in early american clutter. Since I am always reading several books, they are stashed all over the house. Cookbooks are my passion and there are two full bookcases of them in the kitchen. There is a bookshelf in every room (sometimes 2 or 3) and they are all overflowing. I don’t really have an office so wherever I happen to be sitting is where I open mail or go through receipts. Laundry is a monster that I can’t ever seem to tame. My sweetheart is so patient with me. Only once in a while does he shovel through the mess and gently ask if I might consider making room for him to read the paper at the table. When I read this chapter in Luke I thought I was in the clear. I can certainly start giving more to the poor if it will make my dishes and my life cleaner!!! Who knew!!
|My corner of the house|
Seriously though, this time of year is a time that we are acutely aware of the poor in our community. No one wants to see a child go without during Christmas. Tonight, youngest daughter and I had a marvelous time picking out gifts for the children we had chosen off the angel tree at our church. We chose a variety of ages so that we could have more fun picking out toys of all kinds. There are an amazing array of toys these days. Since my children are long grown, I have not visited the toy department in quite a while. Did you know that every disney movie ever made has a complete aisle? That Barbie comes in over 50 versions? Which leads me to the fact that we had to search for a Barbie that didn’t look like a street corner hooker. For goodness sakes, it’s a doll for a 5 year old. Did you know that kids play with skateboards for their fingers? I am so behind the times obviously. We did have a great time and came away with what I hope are toys that will brighten a child’s eyes on Christmas morning.
I am more aware than ever of those in need in my life and in my community. The economy has made life so much harder for so many people. Sweetheart and I are so blessed, both materially and spiritually. Our children are all doing well and have the things they need. Maybe not the things they want, but they all have the things they need. I have known want. I have been without. There was a time in my life when I slept on a cold floor with my daughter on my chest to keep her from being on the cold floor. I always promised myself that if I ever got out of that period of my life, that I would make sure that I never let someone in need pass me by. I pray each day that the Lord will continue to bless me with more than enough so I can give to those in need. And if He wants to clean my house while I am out giving to others, I will be ever so grateful!