once i get past the fact that everything given to me isn’t mine, this last resolution is one of the easiest to accomplish.
i don’t necessarily mean being more generous with our money. i am referring to generosity of time, of self, of “things” that own too much of our desires.
i certainly need a lot of help being more generous with money because by nature, i am a tight-wad. i can jokingly blame the scotch-irish in my blood for this, but it’s a serious nature, and one that i’ve been working on. how can we let go of our constant desire to a) make more money and b) spend more money (on ourselves) and c) not give away our money?
this resolution is one of the three i will not post about again. it’s not that i won’t be working on it and doing it, but what good is giving away ourselves when we brag about it?
matthew 6:1-4 ~ Be especially careful when you are trying to be good so that you don’t make a performance out of it. It might be good theater, but the God who made you won’t be applauding. 2-4″When you do something for someone else, don’t call attention to yourself. You’ve seen them in action, I’m sure—’playactors’ I call them— treating prayer meeting and street corner alike as a stage, acting compassionate as long as someone is watching, playing to the crowds. They get applause, true, but that’s all they get. When you help someone out, don’t think about how it looks. Just do it—quietly and unobtrusively. That is the way your God, who conceived you in love, working behind the scenes, helps you out.
of the many ways i hope i am more generous this year (and future years!), i hope to see our family doing more for other families, giving away of our resources to those who don’t have, donating time and money to children who are in need, focus our prayers on the needs of others. i do want to share an example of being generous of my time that happen this week:
during the course of a school day, i tell adam (4 yrs) to “go play” a lot as i work with the older two on math or spelling. he is a great independent play-with-toys kind of kid and he does sit in on bible and history and science lessons, but i don’t have a mommy-adam-only time set aside during our days. two nights ago, he was more cranky than usual and he said something to the effect of, “i just want to do school!” so yesterday, i told him that after our math lessons it was mommy-and-adam time.
we got some colored pencils and paper ready and spent a good half hour coloring in some pictures. the older two wanted to do it with us, and i was ready to tell them that this time was just for me and adam, but adam said, “sure! get your art kit!” so all four of us continued to color. when we were done, adam wanted to read a book while the older two went back to their legos. we read one of his new favorite books (gifted to him by his godparents at christmas) together and then just sat and talked for a few minutes more. a real, uninterupted conversation with my four-year-old.
last night at dinner, it was his turn to pray for the meal and he normally says the same thing every time he prays, but last night he added, “thank you for my surprises with mommy today” to his prayer. i didn’t understand what he meant by the word “surprise” so i asked him and he said, “you know, the craft time and scuffy book with you…” he actually LIKED having one-on-one time with me! he THANKED GOD for that time.
those words were a precious gift to me.