Monday, August 22, 2011

It's the little things...

I have always loved the beauty of the little things..

Eating a whole bowl of pudding. Driving with the windows rolled down. Having conversations with random people at the grocery store. Writing cards. Waving. Picking things out of the garden and eating them right there...

But, everytime I decide to give something back to God even more, He shows me more of those beautiful, little things I so desperately love.

In January I decided to cut off my long, golden locks that I had been growing out for so long. Not because God told me to, but because I had to ask myself, "What could I give up to show God that I love Him? Do I hold onto my hair because I feel like it's the only thing that makes me beautiful?" My answer to the second question was..Yes. What would happen, though, if I gave up that long hair? God's purposes for me would still be there. His ever-abounding love and grace, still there. Now, don't get me wrong, I don't think we have to give up everything or that God is asking us to. Sometimes I just like to physically do something in remembrance of what I have learned in my heart. My prayer was, "God, here's something simple and human, but something beautiful you've given me. I'm cutting it off in remembrance of that all I need is you. If you stripped me of everything, I would still thrive because of You." And God made it fun. We were having lunch with a bunch of our friends after church and one of the great "brothers" in my life, Dale, volunteered to do the cutting. We let him hack away and laughed for weeks when people complimented my haircut.

Recently, I've been trying to be a better steward of the money God has entrusted me with. I've made commitments to not buy anything I don't absolutely need. Even if it's on sale. I've been cleaning out my closet and giving up things I don't need. For the last few years, I've been thinking of all these ways I could help with the ministries that God has put on my heart. One of the greatest joys and callings God has put on my heart is, "Help others achieve their God-given dreams." There are my friends in Mizak, Haiti, who just want to go to university. There are the beautiful families that want to adopt, but cannot afford it. There are people with God-given dreams who we are to use our resources to help. So, this idea was born. A little garage sale style shop out of my room, called Lydia & Yves. Lydia, was a fashionable woman, a seller of purple. I too, love fashion...and I too have been chosen by God. Yves is the name of one of our dear friends from Haiti; A man that proves that we can love each other, even when we cannot speak the same language and are not able to say it. Half of everything I sell is going into a fund. A fund that will for now go to one of three things: helping someone from the blog-world adopt, helping someone in Haiti go to university, or helping with the cost of sending someone on a mission trip.

As all these things were coming about and God was telling me to step out in faith and give. And once I was in step with Him, he reminded me of the beautiful little things.

Last Sunday I told my friend I like her shoes. She took them right off of her feet and gave them to me. How beautiful.

God provided all the ways and money for my tuition this semester.

Today, my grandmother gave me a cute tote bag.

Why? God doesn't have to, but He even surprises us with little things. This is not always the case, but shouldn't we be ready to see those beautiful things when they come along? Give up something and you will notice how much you truly are blessed. Look at your world.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Top Five...

I'm a big fan of lists and numbers and fonts...and things to be thankful for. I started giving my top with friends awhile ago. It brings joy just to say, "What are some little things that blessed my week or keep coming to mind?" So here's my top 5. Please tell me yours.

1.) The day I decided to cut off my long, blonde hair.

2.) These slightly cooler, beginning of fall days.

3.) White Chocolate Mocha,

4.) Cleaning out the closet.

5.) Confessing our struggles to friends and having them encourage with scripture!