"She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy."
Many times I get caught up. Caught up with my children running around and getting into stuff, cleaning, cleaning, and cleaning. I get caught up with my own issues, my loneliness, my sadness, my etc. Lately I have been finding myself caught up with Jesus...His word, His will, His coming, and His love. I find myself looking at the world, the war, the hate, the many that do not know of his love...and initially I felt hopeless and overwhelmed. I prayed and asked God what I should do. I am one person, I could not possibly help everyone that I saw. I went to Him and prayed, prayed for him to use me. Lately I have seen face to face the struggle of a friend to provide for her family...I have seen her empty fridge...and God showed me that even if it's only one small bag of canned goods, or one scarf, or one winter coat that I can reach out and help others. Here are a few examples of how we can help and reach out to others during this Christmas season....
1. The Grocery Bag Sew off...I thought this one was good for people that sew and are crafty. The idea is that you make a grocery bag, fill it with food and deliver it to your local food bank.
2. My friend Joanne and I were having a conversation about possibly knitting a scarf and donating it either to someone that we knew might need it or even to a shelter. Even if you do not know how to knit, you might have one in your closet that you are not using, or even blankets, jackets, whatever....Even the items that you have that have little significance to you would be received with such joy by someone else.
3. I found this link on ehow, I thought it was very interesting and the simple advice was profound to me, maybe because it was so simple...I thought it was good advice to bake an extra pie and give it to a soup kitchen or buy extra vegetables and fruits from your local farmers market and donate it. I know we all know people that are struggling, even blessing them with these items to help out would be an awesome idea as well.
4. Feed America is a great resource as well. You can find local food banks in your area.
5. Lastly, God has put it on our hearts to contact our church and we were told that there where people in the community and even at our own church that were struggling and that they were taking donations. At our local grocery store we noticed that canned goods, like string beans, corn, carrots, etc were very inexpensive. We have tons of reusable grocery bags...so why not fill them and donate. I guess what my point is that it doesn't need to be a lot...it just needs to be from your heart and that God can use us if we are willing to surrender to Him.