Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Return to Reality

30-Day Giving Challenge

I stepped away from reality for a little while.  I started the month of November out with an enthusiam for giving.  I wanted to make the month about doing for others and stepping away from self.  I managed to gain so much more than I was giving.  The gains were certainly not monetary but gains all the same.  When I signed on to the 30 days of giving challenge I wanted to make certain that it was not a financial hardship.  While working on ideas to give  without cost I began de-cluttering.  I was overwhelmed by clutter at my house along with the task of going through the personal things of two other households.  There didn't seem to be enough hours in the day to clean and de-clutter so I simply fretted about it all.  Delivering clothes to a local shop that supports a woman's shelter was one of my choices in giving.  An overflowing closet can now be used again.  Although there is still so much to de-clutter - it's a beginning. 

Another area that is cluttered is my life in general.  We, as a family, live life on the go.  I was tired and the anxiety of the holiday was taking over.  I had things I wanted to do yet I seemed to be pulled in different directions so I did what normal people do.  I bailed!  I accepted an invitation to spend the holiday with an Aunt and I took it.  Although DH could not join us - the kids and I loaded up and left town for a few days.  I had 5 full days of family.  We ate and shopped.  Took in some Christmas lights in Ft. Worth and oohed over Cowboy Stadium where our beloved Saints just played (and won).  We watched TV together and we did things that we should do much more often like laughing and being lazy.  Our tree is up and decorated and most of the shopping is complete. 

I wanted to be disappointed in the fact that I didn't get to all of the things on "my" list of giving opportunities.  I leaned toward the feeling of failure - but the reality is that giving does not have to go outside the doors of my home.  My family needed the down time and they needed me to slow down and enjoy the blessings that were right in front of me.  Saying no to some meant saying yes to my family.  Setting some boundaries with my time was the best gift I could offer my husband and children.  It was a blessing to participate in 30 days of giving and to open my eyes to what is important.  The good thing is that there are many days to come in which I can pull out my list and do some things that I choose to do. 

It has been refreshing to seek out ways to give and to pay better attention to the needs of others.  Even if that need is to simply notice that they are having a bad day and need someone to simply care.  I took those opportunities as divine appointments from God - He placed those types of situations before me and it was my place to follow through with showing His love to others - to complete strangers. 

What a blessing these ladies are to host such an event.  Each one was an inspiration as are their blogs each day. 

So - here's to many more days of giving.  Here's to returning to reality as a rested and relaxed member of society. 

Love you guys,

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