04 February 2011

Being “Generic”

“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with
all your strength and with all your mind; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”
- Luke 10:27

All week I’ve been deliberating as to what our “sparkle” suggestion should be for today. Well,  yesterday I had to make a trip to Walgreen’s and as I walked through the door, right away an idea popped into my head.  The first thing I saw was a box of shovels and snow scrappers. Just past the checkout counter was a display of polar fleece throws for under $10. I continued down the aisle, checking my personal shopping list along the way.  I needed some hand lotion for my dry skin... winter weather does that to a person... aisle 3. Turning the corner I noticed that candy and magazines filled the next aisle.  And of course, in the back of the store was the pharmacy. You might be wondering why I am taking you on a “tour” through Walgreen’s. Well, I’ve been thinking about the fruits of the Spirit and how I could use them to make a difference in the lives of others. So, here is my idea.

It’s Friday, Let’s Sparkle... action required... All over the U.S. everyone is having cRaZy weather. Here in Denver we went from the 70’s on Saturday and Sunday to below zero temperatures for the rest of the week. How has your weather impacted your life lately?  Have you thought about your elderly neighbor, the widow/widower a few doors down, or the single mom with a new baby that lives across the street? How are they doing in this weather? What if we reach out and “make a difference” in the lives of our neighbors.... right now, today?

So, I asked myself...

Have I seen my neighbors outside lately?
Are they able to shovel their own sidewalk?
Can they get to their mailbox, are their newspapers piling up?
Are they keeping warm enough?
Do they have enough groceries, baby food & diapers, chocolate?
Can they get out to pick-up their medicines?
Could they be feeling cooped up, bored, shut-in, secluded or lonely?

With some creative thinking the list could go on and on.  Now think back to my first paragraph... is it making sense now? Maybe someone could use a small throw for warmth. Some hand lotion and a new magazine, or maybe a new coffee mug with some packets of hot chocolate might just make their day. If purchasing something isn’t in your budget, why not volunteer to shovel their walkway, pick up their mail or run an errand next time you’re out and about. If you enjoy cooking, some suggestions would be to make a plate of cookies, or double your dinner recipe and share your leftovers with a neighbor. Who doesn’t love something “home-cooked” that you don’t have to make yourself! A small basket of fruit might be appreciated, or, maybe you could spare a few moments of your time for conversation.

When we think about serving others, too often we picture the homeless in the inner city, the orphans in Haiti, or missionary work in far-away places. Don't get me wrong, these are awesome ways to make a difference, but this week why not "be generic."  During this time of severe weather, let’s serve the “general, common, basic” needs of those around us.  Let’s open our front door, stand on the step and ask God to reveal “someone in our own neighborhood” that could benefit from our willingness to serve. It's just possible that our neighbor may see the face of Christ in our eyes next time they open their door!

Have a blessed weekend – stay safe, stay warm!
God’s Peace, Donna Weaver

“Peace is not something you wish for, it’s something you make,
something you do, something you are, and, something you give away.”
– Robert Fulghum

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