Wednesday, May 22, 2013

dollar store compassion: teaching children to help others and how you can help NOW!

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i'm not bragging about what my family and i do to try and help those in need.  in fact, i'm downright uncomfortable writing this post for this reason:

But when you give to someone in need,
don't let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.
Give your gifts in private, and your Father,
who sees everything, will reward you.
-Matthew 6:3-4

i admit to having chosen unnecessary comforts in my life many times over the basic needs of others.  but when Bear was born, so was my need to have a service-oriented heart.  i couldn't imagine not being able to feed, diaper, or clothe him.  that thought dug deep inside of me, giving birth in me, the heart of a Servant of God.  as he's gotten older, i'm doing all i can to foster this same calling in him.  i shared a few ways we do this in the Moms With a Mission Series at Cheap Crafty Mama

part of fostering a sense of servitude in my children is by doing projects as a family that make us sacrifice.  the items pictured below (same as above) were all purchased at the dollar store for a total of $30.  this was done instead of a family pizza night. 

another way is by serving others myself and sharing with them what the experience has taught me with my family.  last week, i volunteered for a few hours with some friends from church at a food bank in my old hometown.  i walked in feeling a bit awkward and walked out feeling more moved to serve a cause then i have in a long time...quite possibly ever. 

the Heartland Hope Mission is the largest food pantry in Nebraska.  their mission statement says it all:

Our mission is to provide food, clothing and promote self-sufficiency for people in need. We provide a weeks' supply of groceries, along with hygiene products, clothing items, and household goods to the working poor. In addition, we assist clients with other needs by providing eligibility screening and referrals.
in 2012, the Heartland Hope Mission served 34,084 people and provided over 520,000 meals!  how much of a blessing is that?  for the few hours i was there, we served almost 100 families, helping them pick food off the shelf to get them through a rough patch.  every single one said thank you.  some were choked up.  one cried when she was leaving because she hadn't expected to get so much. 
 And the King will say, "I tell you the truth,
when you did it to one of the least of these
my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me."
-Matthew 25:40

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This post is sponsored by The Holy Spirit.
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