Considering Others First

As the weather turns cold, my thoughts jump (as in Neil Armstrong’s “One giant leap for mankind”) to Christmas. And Christmas decorating. And they’re reeled back in by the mess at home. Then the mess and the thoughts of Christmas around the corner convert to motivation to clean so I can decorate. Did you follow that all right? It will probably take me the next two or three months to get the place worthy of Christmas decorations, anyway. And I’ve never been able to go all-out with my decorating because I don’t have room with all the clutter. But I really want to decorate for Christmas.

We also got some new, much-needed bedroom furniture last month and finally have places to store everything we need to store. And my mind jumps to designer-inspired decorations and a new comforter for the bed.

In short, I love my home and want it to look like a home.

But then, I got word that a friend lost her job.

And a stranger on Facebook is reluctantly selling her wedding bands because she and her fiancé have fallen on hard times and they need the money. You know it’s hard times when you’re selling your wedding bands while planning a wedding.

And I think… Do I really need to spend $100 on bedding when I could use that $100 to help someone else put food on the table?

So instead of looking at home decor on Pinterest an Zulily, I’m rethinking how I’ll spend my money. I’d like to take a friend grocery shopping, and hire a stranger to help with the tasks that (who am I kidding?) I won’t be able to get done on my own, anyway. Not by Christmas, and maybe not until the kids move out of the house. Fourteen years from now.

I am so thankful for the people who have hired me when I needed work, helped with money, tasks, or encouragement when I needed help, and to God for putting these people and blessings in my life. Why not pay it forward, and consider the needs of others before my own? If I spent the money on myself, it would only add to the clutter, anyway. Instead, I’ll use it to add value to the lives of others. Because, friend or stranger, they’re valuable to God and to me.

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