How the Grinch stole Christmas…

How your Grinchstole your joy… and then your stolen joy…

Stole someone else’s joy… turning you into the Grinch. 

Making a difference in one person’s life is really only a domino effect. It can be a domino effect of 

1. great joy or

2. one of destruction and great pain and shrieks of WHY DID YOU DO THAT

Think of the two sides of this scenario.

A child who has spent an eternity (maybe 5 minutes) setting up an elaborate path for his or her dominoes and their sibling walks by and accidentallyhits the table or one of the dominoes setting off the chain of events knocking down the dominoes before its creator was finished. 

Or on the grander side, the creator has finished and the finale is spectacular. All involved, the creator and the observer enjoying the show. 

Yes, we are responsible for our own reaction to an action done to us. There are times are human, fleshly nature comes out and it is hard for us to react the way we know we should. 

If we can pursue love, joy, encouragement and hope for one person. We are really creating a domino effect of touching way more than just one life. It is so easy this day in age to get caught up in…

My life, my needs, my parking spot, my gift on the shelf two different hands reaching for, my lane in traffic, what are you doing for me.. me.. me ME?!

Moral of the story: 

Don’t be a joy stealer. 

Be a “Hope Dealer”.  So how can we be a hope dealer in such a crazy world and season? Where can we find our hope? 

“Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone.” -Psalm 33:22 NLT

To be a hope dealer we have to 

1. Believe in the one who has hope.

Psalm 37:34 NLT, “Put your hope in the Lord. Travel steadily along his path. He will honor you by giving you the land. You will see the wicked destroyed.”

2. Receive the hope he has for us.

 Romans 15:13 NLT, “I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” 

John 10:10 NKJV, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.”

3. Live in the hope, knowing the outcome.                             

John 3:16 NLT, “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

Let us in this (busy Christmas season) and every season, be hope dealers. 

Ones who actively purse being a piece of the domino effect for beauty and not destruction. 

Let us choose our words wisely. Let our actions not be impulse, knee jerk reactions, but purposeful actions to build up and not tear down. (Not saying we will never be hurt by others, but let’s not react out of our anger.)

A smile, a nod of the head or hand allowing the person ahead of you in traffic, giving the person the spot that they really had been waiting for in the busy parking lot (for those of you in Ohio I imagine this in the Easton parking lot.. everyone driving in circles trying to find the close spot and someone pulling in quick because of the way the person exiting the lot allowed you to sneak into the spot that really you hadn’t been waiting for.) Buying coffee for the person behind you who is on the phone and seems stressed and agitated, thanking the cashier who is working overtime and just exhausted from people, leaving a good tip, for a bad waiter/tress because the restaurant is under staffed (not your waiter/tress’ fault). 

Self-care or Selfishness

Wow, I set a “planned” day of the week to start posting my blogs and I failed epically my first week with that… 

However, that got me thinking about how many of us have the best intentions to start a new routine, be it a workout routine, devos, a cleaning schedule, posting a blog once a week, ________. [You fill in the blank with the goals or aspiration you have for your day.] As a mom, it is so easy for one thing to throw off my entire day’s schedule. But IT IS OK! Let’s not get discouraged, but wake up the next day and pick up where we left off. 

Back to the topic I feel like I want to write about today. I don’t have a ton to write about it, because, to be honest, I am still working through this myself. I’d love your input as well, if it’s from a good book, quote, or other blog post that you have read or know of that has encouraged you on this topic.

SELF-CARE

Self-care is IMPORTANT…even though sometimes, I find it hard to sit down and take care of myself. I have others to take care of and want to give them my best. But if I am not taking care of myself, then am I truly giving them my best? 

I was listening to a podcast, That Sounds Funwith Annie F. Downs, with her guest Curtis Zackery. In this episode, CZ quoted Parker Palmer, 

Then probably less than ten minutes later, I was having a conversation with someone and she started talking about how VERY important self-care is. This stood out to me enough, that I thought maybe someone else needs to hear it as well this week. 

Self-care can look different to each person. It could also look different day to day, week to week or even during different seasons of life. It shouldn’t be limited to the physical act of “pampering” by getting a massage, pedicure, manicure, hair cut/colored. It should also include taking mental breaks from your endless to-do list that will never be finished. I’d encourage you to sit down and grab a coffee. Pair that coffee with a good friend, a book, a movie, TV show, or even just sit down outside / inside and just drink your coffee while it is hot, in silence! 

Or pass the coffee, LAY DOWN AND TAKE A NAP!

Like I said, this would be short and sweet this week! 

PS – Have any of you started taking a scripture each week to meditate on? If so, do you have any inspiring “God moments” in which you saw the truth of your scripture show up in your daily life? Please share in the comments below, I’d love to encourage and have others read how God was speaking to you!