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Helping Those Who Hurt

 Places like The Covering House bring awareness to the prevalence of sex trafficking and help those who’ve been exploited.  The Covering House is non-profit organization that provides refuge and restoration for girls that have experienced sexual trafficking or sexual exploitation here in the United States.

 On September 3rd, The Covering House is hosting their 6th annual Race for Refuge.
I will be walking a 5K to raise money to help support the good
work they do there.

ANY amount will help. ❤ ❤ ❤    Please prayerfully consider giving up your daily coffee/tea/pop stop for a week or even just even one day to sponsor me.  You can give online and your donations go directly to The Covering House. 


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 Heavenly Father, thank You for Your love and for Your daily provisions.  Thank You for providing places like The Covering House that help the exploited. Thank You for inspiring me to help places like The Covering House and to do this 5K.  Thank You for each person who will read this post and who will prayerfully give to The Covering House so they may continue the good work being done there.  Please give Your wisdom, strength, and guidance to each staff member and volunteer at The Covering House as they minister to broken girls.  Please restore each client who goes there as only You can.  It’s in Jesus’ precious Name I pray, so that You alone will be glorified.  Amen. 

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No Bake Cookies and Christian Love

  It was 34 years ago that I first tried a No Bake Cookie.

 

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I was single, overseas, and living in Air Force barracks. When a coworker’s wife made them for him to share at work, I asked for the recipe. It was the first recipe that someone ever wrote out for me. This couple also happened to be some of the first true Christians I met.

From the ages of 15 to 21, I could have been called a “wild child”. Even though I ran and worked out, I also smoked cigarettes and drank heavily. Very heavily. I lived a very wicked lifestyle and everyone I worked with knew it.

One professing Christian told me that women shouldn’t be in the military. He also told me how his wife stayed home, never wore pants, and only listened to the radio. Sure — like that was going to give me a desire to become a Christian.

Thankfully, God continued to put nonjudgmental people in my path who shared His love in kind and thoughtful ways. They did not put down my sinful lifestyle. They didn’t comment on my filthy language. They showed me Christ’s love in caring actions and the way that they lived their lives.

 I’ve used that cookie recipe numerous times. I’ve made them for my own family. I’ve made multiple batches for youth group events. I’ve taken plates of them to new neighbors, sick friends, and new moms. I make them for the kids I work with at school.

I rewrote that recipe on a card because the original became wrinkled and stained from use.  Every time I take the recipe card out, I think of that loving Christian wife who made cookies for her husband’s coworkers, how the LORD used those cookies to soften my heart, and I thank Him for that loving act so many years ago.  As I made a batch of  No Bake Cookies tonight, I thanked the LORD for allowing me to serve Him and will do so every time I make them.    

Feel Good Story of the Year

Last week while listening to talk radio, I heard the story of Army Specialist Brent Grommet.  While serving in Afghanistan, both Spc. Grommet and his service dog were injured.  Before returning stateside, Grommet had begun the process of adopting Matty.  Unfortunately, there was some sort of mistake and the two were separated.   While searching for Matty, Spc. Grommet was informed that Matty had already been adopted.   The two had been been apart for the last 16 months, but were reunited this past weekend.

  My family once adopted a pair of dogs, only to have their prior owners request them back because they missed them too much.  Everyone in my family was heartbroken because those sweet dogs had already stolen our hearts, but my parents did the right thing by returning them.  I can imagine how this family might be grieving over Matty’s departure from their home.

The family who had adopted Matty have done an extremely kind and unselfish act, thinking more about the welfare of Matty and Spc. Grommet.  Having been a military service dog, Matty is a veteran of war and could very well be suffering from PTSD.  Matty needs to be with Spc. Grommet just as much as Spc. Grommet needs his canine friend for his own healing.

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”   Philippians 2:3-4

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Click here to read more about Matty and Spc. Grommet

Welcome home, Matty.  Thank you for your service to our country, Specialist Grommet and Matty!  And thank you to the kind family for your unselfish act of love for two of our nation’s heroes!!  ❤ ❤ ❤

Celebrating 53 Years of Life

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A generous man will prosper;
whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.

Proverbs 11:25 (NIV)

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A couple of months ago I shared a post about doing anonymous acts of kindness.  When we do nice things for others, our bodies produce endorphins, the very same “feel good” chemical that is released when we exercise. That is how helping others helps us — it boosts our mood because that’s how God made our wonderfully complex and amazing bodies!

I turn 53 on Friday and I have 53 cards made up.  I have no idea what acts I will do or who I will give gifts to because I’m just going to do what the Holy Spirit leads me to do.

To celebrate God’s gift of allowing me to live 53 years here on Earth, please feel free to help me do Anonymous Acts Of Kindness ~ ~ ~ anonymously because we will be elevating Christ instead of me.  In Matthew 6:1-6, Jesus talked about how we should not let our left hand know what our right hand is doing when we give to others. I really like how The Message words this:

“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.

When you do something for someone else, don’t call attention to yourself.
You’ve seen them in action, I’m sure—‘play actors’ 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.”


Follow this link to my Pinterest board where you can get free printables and lists of kindness acts — many kind acts do NOT require $$.

 

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Acts of Kindness

aaok

A generous man will prosper;
whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.

Proverbs 11:25 (NIV)

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In chapter 12 of Made to Crave, Lysa TerKeurst encourages us to “fill our afternoons with His thoughts of love toward others” instead of wallowing in discouragement or frustration over our struggles.

I love to do things for others. I like visiting with the checkers at Walmart; it seems to cheer them up on particularly busy afternoons. When I’m finished shopping at Aldi, I leave my quarter in shopping cart lock for the next person to find. I secretly pay for a stranger’s meal as I pay for mine. I send cards and little gifts to my friends. I also make meals for friends who are going through a tough time or “just because”.

Did you know that when we do nice things for other people, our bodies produce endorphins, the “feel good” chemical that is also released when we exercise? That is how helping others helps us — it boosts our mood because that’s how God made our wonderfully complex and amazing bodies!

So the next time you’re feeling sorry for yourself because you’ve messed up your diet AGAIN, take those extra cookies you baked and make up a plate or two to leave in your neighbor’s mailbox. When you’ve had an argument with your teen and she’s still not talking to you even though you’ve apologized, put some single serving microwave popcorn packs and apples in a basket and leave them in your office break-room. Down in the dumps because your presentation didn’t go as planned? Make an extra meal when you make your family’s dinner, freeze it and give it to a friend.

I turn 53 in 2 months and I want to do something special. I’ve heard of people doing “random acts of kindness” for the amount of years they’ve lived on this Earth and inviting their friends to do some in honor of their birthday. I would like to do this, but with a different twist.

Instead of RAK or RAOK (random acts of kindness), I would like my friends and family to do AAOK: Anonymous Acts Of Kindness.

You’re probably wondering why anonymous. Acts of kindness should not be about what we do, how much we do, how it makes us feel, or even how it makes the receiver feel.  It’s about serving someone else in humility. When it’s done in secret, there’s no strings attached because you don’t know the reactions of the recipient — there’s absolutely no expectations on the behalf of either party.  

When you do something kind anonymously, you elevate Christ because you’ve done a good deed in His name. In Matthew 6:1-6, Jesus talked about how we should not let our left hand know what our right hand is doing when we give to others. I really like how The Message words this:

“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.

When you do something for someone else, don’t call attention to yourself.
You’ve seen them in action, I’m sure—‘play actors’ 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.”


Now, even though these acts of kindness should be random (that means done without a particular plan), you may need to read through some lists just so you’re a little prepared ahead of time — we keep ourselves so busy sometimes that we don’t leave enough room to even think about doing something kind for a stranger. You can do what I do, and allow the Holy Spirit to lead you: stopping for someone on the side of the road, offering to help put grocery sacks in the car for an elderly person, let someone go ahead of you in the check out line, etc.

My birthday is April 11th. I hope you’ll follow my blog and join in on celebrating the day with anonymous acts of kindness. Follow this link to my Pinterest board where you can get free printables and lists of kindness acts — many kind acts do NOT require $$. Below are some suggestions you can do now: February 10 – 16 is Random Acts of Kindness Week. Please feel free to share any AAOK’s that you’ll be doing.

rak week

*Pay for someone’s meal at a restaurant.
*Pay for the meal of the car behind you at the drive thru.
*Give gift cards/cash to a family in need.
*Assist a stranded motorist.
*Leave a GENEROUS tip for your waitress/waiter with a thank note.
*Bring a basket of baked goods and hot chocolate to your animal shelter workers.

*Bring a basket of teas and coffee creamers to a teacher’s lounge.
* Let someone go in front of you in line.
*Help someone with their cart at the supermarket.
*Pick up litter at a park or school, or along your daily walk route.
*Make blessing bags for homeless people.