January 01, 2016

2016 I want to be more like my Mom.

I was in an Amish bakery once and on the wall was a cardboard handwritten sign.

All of Me - None of Jesus
Less of Me - More of Jesus
None of Me - All of Jesus

I know that the Holy Spirit engrained those words in me because almost 20 years later they are still words I think about often. 

I definitely live in the middle of that sign. Less of Me - More of Jesus...I waver however in how much less and how much more. 

The Holy Spirit also engrained some memories in my heart when I was at my Mom's funeral about 15 years ago. Many people stood and talked about things my mom had DONE for them and how much it meant to them. My mom had always been someone who took notice of others. How could she bring sunshine into their lives? My mom would be called poor by the worlds standards, but she would give whatever she had to others. She cooked a meal for a newlywed couple when we were little, the man years later commented that he noticed we didn't have anything in our refrigerator. My mom had cooked the last of what we had and invited someone over to share a meal. It was holy ground. The stories could go on, but the gist of it was that my mom was a giver. She gave of herself, she gave of her possessions, she gave of her smiles, she gave us hopeful optimism; she was someone who had chosen to look at the bright side in every situation when things would be dismal. She made the meals of oranges from a neighbors tree or popcorn a party. She knew there were people who had less, and she also knew that every situation was determined in your own outlook. She was a gift. 

So this year I hope to hover to the right on the more of Jesus, more kindness, more generosity, more love, like my Mom.

A place that God has convicted me over the last many years is through Facebook. I love Facebook, but it is super easy to be tempted to hit "like" or make a compassionate comment when someone is struggling and reach the conclusion that my job is done. God has made a check in my spirit when that comment or like is not enough, when he is calling me to be the hands of Jesus. I do my best to listen and to follow through. I also feel like it doesn't have to be a huge gesture most of the time, maybe a note in the mail, a homemade pie, a bag of candy, paper goods, always it includes prayer. 

There is no satisfaction in my life when I am focused inward. To make 2016 the best year I can I need to be focused upward to God and outward to those around me. 

Less of Me and More of Jesus, being available to be used in the Kingdom of God happening all around me on earth. Thanks be to God.