12 Days of Christmas (Giving) – Day 11

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Well, here is a FIRST for ‘Becoming Ordinary’.  A GUEST post by a dear friend of mine.  I am posting it to all of you, instead of recording myself reading it simply because I’ve run out of time today, and I am the only adult home tonight (Brad is away, frolicking in the snow 🙂 ) to do all of the bedtime routines, baths, lunches for tomorrow etc.  So by doing it THIS way, I can bring to you Fiona’s words, to refresh and encourage us as we move into tomorrow.  JOIN ME TOMORROW for my LAST, and very SPECIAL post!

(Have I mentioned how thankful and blessed I feel that ANY of you even follow along?! Thank you, thank you!)

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In reflecting back on this past year of 2014, there were many days when I would ask the LORD, “what is it I have to give?” I had been in a season where the JOY OF GIVING had taken a back seat in my heart, only because my circumstances had changed and I couldn’t ‘GIVE’in the manner I was accustomed to doing for so many years. My life had come to a complete halt and all that was normal had become ‘less than ordinary’ for me and I also began to learn a new definition of what it meant to be ‘humble’ and had to check my attitude at the door. You see I am the woman who “love, love, loves” to give gifts!!! Yes, I take extraordinary joy in giving gifts, in picking out the perfect present and wrapping the gift was a whole other level of joy for me!

So when I had to put all of this on hold, so to speak, I really had to check my heart and soul and began to reflect on what it meant to give. It wasn’t easy to be invited to parties where gifts were expected or special occasions where everyone would bring a gift and contribute to the dinner party. So I often declined and yet, it was more difficult to be on my own, when I would rather be at the party having fun with my friends!

Well, life went on and in response to my prayer, asking God ‘what is it I have to give?’ I know that God began to change my perspective and showed me the “Gifts” within. How I realized that it wasn’t anyone else holding me back, it was myself and my own expectations. So I began to pray and ask God to use me “just as I am” and to see myself as He see’s me! It wasn’t long before I began to “live life on purpose” and with passion and embracing my own personal gifts. In reflecting on what I could do well and allowing myself to ‘give thanks’ it began to make room for more of the good things in my life. My desires began to change and I knew that quiet voice within me was pushing me to “invite friends into my home” and even then, I still wondered what could I possibly give? It was in taking that first step and doing what I could with what I had, that made the difference. It was then my friends began to tell me how much they loved my home and how it was like a sanctuary of peace for them. How they loved the quiet and they would bring over wonderful treats and bring me a little extra when I least expected it ~ although it brought tears to my eyes…they were tears of JOY and GRATITUDE!!!

You see, even when I couldn’t give in the way I was accustomed too…I began to see that it’s more about being in the ‘PRESENCE’ of friends and soul sista’s and not the ‘PRESENTS’. I can tell you that the amazing bond we share as we talk about matters of the heart and doing life together ~ that is worth more than any present! It was when we were authentic and openly shared our stories, giving one another a place to ‘just come as you are and to just be’ that I truly felt like I had something to give and it really is amazing to embrace “The Heart of Giving.” Amen!

Guest Blogger: Fiona Jackson, Coquitlam, BC

 

Becoming Ordinary: Year 1 Day 145

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