Loaves of love

 

This week I was featured on the Facebook page of the Governor’s Home Care Commission . When it was posted on Facebook I was surprised at how many people responded.  Although I’ve been on the Commission for a number of years some of my friends did not know that I was a part of it at all.  I need to confess that at times it’s difficult to know if serving in that capacity is helping anyone, nevertheless I know it does.

 

There are so many activities  and groups to be a part of, runs, walks, fundraisers; it’s hard to know which ones you should really get behind, and which ones you should let just slide by. We are constantly bombarded with causes to get involved or donate to all of the time.  For example, a couple of weeks ago, I took part in the 9th Annual Walk, Roll, and Run Fundraiser for United Cerebral Palsy of Oregon and Southwest WashingtonIt bugged me that I spent hours putting information on Facebook about my event, with specific invites to donate, and no one responded. It brought up feelings of being in this role and feeling abandoned.  In the end, though, it helped me to realize that there are so many great causes, and that we can only respond to those that pull on our hearts.

 

Now the ball is in my court. Last night I was reminded that there is the fundraiser/walk for diabetes. My heart goes out to my friend’s 2 year daughter who has this dreadful disease; can my little donation make a difference? I know that it can and it will.

 

My other friend JoAnne has been working on a documentary called, Honored to the End, which pays tribute to veterans who have served; just in time for Veterans Day (if you’d like to learn more about it, her website is http://www.bordermountain.org/). For every donation she would like to put the name of your loved, along with their story on a Wall of Honor.

 

In a way it’s like the story of the loaves and fishes in Matthew 14. When we offer a little bit, whether it’s time, money or an encouraging word to someone, God can indeed multiply it.

Matthew 14:17-20

“We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered. “Bring them here to me,” he said. And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 

 

Lyla at the Walk and Roll

The Changes of Life’s Seasons

 This is the season of beginnings and endings. First graders and college freshman are all excited about the new chapters in their lives.  Yet we mothers can tinge of sadness as we reluctantly stand back and watch the familiar slipping away.

 It may seem hard to fathom, but when our children make those transitions in their lives, so can we.  I remember when I told my first grader that I’d gone out to lunch with a friend.  the look on her face was priceless,  as it started to dawn on her that I had a life beyond motherhood.

I ’m a single mother with cerebral palsy so, some people wondered if I could live alone and I wondered what would fill up my time. Throughout the years, I’ve been able to encourage others to face their challenges by telling stories about how I have dealt with some of mine.  For    several years I’d chuckled as I talked about my dream of writing.  Just before my daughter went to college, I went to my first Oregon Christian Writers conference.  Under the watchful eye of Marion Duckworth along with her encouragement and others I’m continuing to develop my writing skills in order to share my experiences as a woman with Cerebral Palsy.

Over the last several years, I’ve had many opportunities to get involved with the community sometimes I feel like I’ve got way too many plates spinning in my life.  One of the most helpful tools that’s  helped me keep my sanity came from a time my friend Colleen and I visited while we had coffee.   While I talked, she drew a tree with one trunk and several branches; each of which represented the different ministries and activities I was involved with. The trunk was my core passion, which is serving God and others. Some of the branches represented things that I am currently involved with but others were things that I had been involved with in the past. Nevertheless, each branch is dear to my heart.

This visual has helped me to center my attention on the activities that cause my heart to beat the fastest; all the while reminding me that they always have to tie into my core passions.

It has also helped me to let go of things that do not line up with my core passions.

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Another thing that I’ve noticed is that tree branches don’t all grow at the same speed.   There are some things (like childrearing) or other things that once took a lot of time and attention.  Those things may not be as time consuming as they once were but they are the branches that make my tree what it is.

Seasons in life change but God’s faithfulness never does.  So let’s just see what He does during this new season of life.