Friday, December 31, 2010

The Health Food Gene Rebels!

Last night i had another realization.
Unlike the majority of the population, i have been unfairly cursed.
Why is it that almost everyone i know can eat like crap day after day & be fine!!!But let me try it and i feel like a truck ran over me, backed up, and ran over me again!
See, i got away with eating a few slices of frozen pizza weds. night (sneaking off to a corner & chuckling with glee). So i figured, why not push it?
Out at the strip mall last night i decided to eat a burger. Bad decision.Half way through it i doubled over in pain. I could barely walk and within a few minutes & lasting for hours i had chest pain, jaw pain, left arm pain...i took an aspirin right away as sooon as i got home because i seriously thought i might be having a heart attack!
Most of the pain went away before 10pm, as long as i stayed lying down in bed. Getting up , i walked hunched over...still had gut pain which woke me from a dead sleep ,and making me sit for a very long time sweating, & heaving.I dont feel great this morning either.
But i guess i lived through the night.
Geeze, guess its back to pumpkin seeds and rice cakes.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Matthew 6:3&4

"But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be done in secret. Then the Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you."

This is a hard one for so many people (including myself). A lot of the time, i really want the person to know i gave to them. It is a hard task to keep it to myself & to give in such a way that the person doesnt know or cannot find out. It works my mind in circles trying to examine my heart for all possible attempts by my self-centered ego to get credit. Here are some of the ways i have caught myself:

-when i tithe, in order to get the tax credit, i use a check.In this way, i know that "someone" at my church knows that we give and how much.I struggle with this because the amount we give is as the Lord has commanded and amounts to a good bit back on our return.I continue to struggle in this area.
-if i give by mail or in an anonymous card/envelope, i know that if i write a blessing or greeting in it , even without signing my name, that the person may recognize my handwriting and credit would go to me , & not to the Father.
-i used to just hand an envelope to someone in need, but this one is so obvious.
-at other times i would give the money to someone else who knew the person and make them promise NOT to tell them who it was from. Of course, then 2 persons potentially would credit me for the gift.

It is really hard to be creative enough to get around the ego.The ego is extremely sneaky and will try to justify everything!I have even driven around looking for complete strangers to give gift cards to, looking for those who look homeless or needy. I figure they don't know me, i don't know them. Once i was on a back road & stop to hand one to a man walking alone. He was indignant about it & stated "do you know who i am?i have a huge stone house & 4 corvettes sitting in my driveway. I live in------- so if you ever drive by it you will know who you gave this to."I hope if he was'nt lieing that, since he was so wealthy , he at least paid it forward.I can't lie either. This event shook me and now i question myself when i am thinking of giving something "will this person be offended?".

Either way, i DO try.

Nowadays, i look at all the angles. I give cash at church if there's an additional offering taken or put a gift card in the basket. I send gift cards instead of a check, and i don't put a return address. I figure i am putting it in the Lords care, so if it gets lost in delivery He is putting it to use elsewhere.Praying before sending is a MUST!!!
Using money orders is good or dropping the envelope on a desk or in a mailbox when you are SURE no one is looking is also good.

Ultimately , i examine my heart and do my best to be truthful with myself.If there is anyway the Lord doesnt get the credit, and i get any credit, i keep turning over alternatives.
Once in a very very great while it is impossible to do it anonymously.But i always make it very very clear that God enabled the gift not me.

Hope you will all read your bibles version of this verse and act accordingly.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Luke 6:38

ok then...let's get started!
first i must apologize that some of the listed verses were incorrect. but we will get to them as we go. i have chosen probably the most famous of all quoted verses about giving as the first one i will be discussing. At least, one of the most famous....

Luke 6:38
"Give , and it will be given to you. A good measure , pressed down, shaken together and running over will be poured into your lap."

The reason i go here first is related to some of the ways i have looked at it over the years.
beginning with my first encounter with it.

I, most likely along with most people, used to believe that this meant that if i give, i would double or triple my money back. Or at least be blessed accordingly because at one time i believed that God would bless me based on me blessing someone else. That he would bless me in the here and now.
For instance, if i gave tithe at church, i'd get a 10 or 20% return on that investment somewhere in my finances.

Nope.

God says we are not saved by our works.And giving just to get back is a work of the flesh.
It has been my experience that God gives when he is darn good & ready and it has nothing to do with anything we have done. It is by His grace that we receive and according to His will & purpose.

So then i believed that God was somehow up there counting it all out, metering & doling out to everyone according to thier level of giving.So i tried to give extra and bless people with materials other than money so that i could save up in my "Godly" account for later, when i went to be with the Lord.

Sorry, but again, it doesnt work that way. He gives because of who He is, not because of who we are or what we do.

Now i believe this verse has a much deeper meaning. I believe that we need to look at how we "come out in the wash" when we give to others. In other words, how we "feel" afterwards.
I personally know that when i make someones day by paying their toll ahead of them, i feel a bit lighter the rest of my trip, which encourages me to try it again & again.And wierdly enough, when you give over & over again like that, it doesnt get old or boring the more you do it. In fact, it is a bit like addiction, but you feel increasingly better as your need grows.The more i do it, the easier it gets, the more i want to give and the better i feel.

So if i take the small amount i started with,pressed it down, shake it together - the amount of return begins to run over and the blessing is poured out into my lap- all without my bank account having increased once!In fact, even if my account runs a little lower, i have never been unable to pay my bills or feed my family because of giving.

This , to me, is proof that God takes care of us, no matter what, if we have faith and obey.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Explaining the New Purpose

so, i am not giving gifts this year...
after explaining that i plan on this year being the year of giving....
How does THAT make sense you ask?
well, i'm glad you asked!!!

i will take this opportunity to explain-

First note that i have found 10 verses in the Bible that speak to giving:
Matthew 6:8,10:8, 10:42
Luke 6:38
acts 20:35
Romans 12:8
2 colossians 8:7,9:7
psalms 18:16
proverbs 28:27

i am sure there are many more! In the next few posts i intend to delve "briefly" into each verse to give an example of how i will be using to fulfill my promise & goal.
But let me assure you , my posts will not be sermons, lectures or analysis of scripture. Just pure intention from my heart.
I hope i need not remind anyone that giving does not mean extravagance , it does not always pertain to money, and a gift is only real if it lifts someone else up, not just makes YOU feel good about being able to give it!

In that vein, i will leave you- hopefully thirsty for more.But if this isnt your cup of tea, switch to water,- and continue in your boring ,average, unflexible way of thinking!
Hope to see ya soon!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

There's a Suprise at the End of this Post!!

OK..i went back again to look at allllll those old blog posts & find myself asking once again-who ami i?who is this stranger that started posting on here back in august of '08, to the tune of yoga & self bliss, wanting less & desiring to be all out vulnerable & open as a "student of life"?
well, here i am...it's me still...in disguise.
So i need a sum -it-all-up session and you get to be the lucky dogs i unleash to!yay!
i noticed that i have done a year in review each year and this year will be no exception. In fact, today i came to a conclusion. each of the years hence i had a theme:
2008- year of people(putting people first-not things)
2009-year of doing(spending time with others)
201o- year of the career(self explanatory, and not a pleasant task)
so, in light of all things wonderful and ultimately revealing- drum roll ,please!
this year i have decided on my theme.
2011- the year of giving!
i will be giving til it affects my lifestyle.i'm commited to it and ,as i believe i mentioned before, it starts with appreciating the simple thimgs in life -a la "wanting less" and FINALLY i have gotten my family to accept the NO GIFT Christmas- at least at our house.My annual family dinner is this Saturday, i sent the invites and made a statement to please not bring gifts (unless they are homemade) as we will not be giving any. And i have some suprises in store for all. i'll post how it went after Saturday, but i am buzzing with excitement!




I can post one gift i am giving on here because i just did it & that person doesnt use the internet.
Ta-da! Here he is~hope you recognize Him!
And a good night to all!