Posts Tagged ‘Gifts


coffee anyone?

i, by no means, take credit for any of the of the following. it is solely written by the lovely Shari Braendel

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 (NIV)

As I tried to catch a few more minutes of sleep, my husband leaned over and whispered that he was going to the pool. We were on a Florida vacation so going to the pool would be a normal activity for many people, just not my husband. He is not someone who “goes to the pool.” Ever. The beach, maybe, but usually only when I go with him for a walk.

So, when he kissed me and headed out the hotel door alone I was curious, although not curious enough to miss a little more shut eye! As I rolled over thirty minutes later, I realized he hadn’t come back yet, so I did a little snooping.

I went onto our balcony to see if I could get a glimpse of him, wondering what he might be doing. As I scanned the pool area, I caught sight of a homeless man sitting on the side of the road leading to the public beach entrance. I remembered passing him the day before as he was sleeping in the grass. Today, however, he was sitting with his legs crossed, coffee in hand, talking to someone. I leaned a little further over the edge of the balcony and my heart skipped as I realized it was my husband. The two of them were sitting on rocks, drinking cups of coffee, engaged in conversation.

I watched them from a distance for about twenty minutes until they parted ways. My husband looked so comfortable talking to this man. They were laughing, smiling and having a nice time. I learned he offered to do the guy’s laundry, and then sent him on his way with a little cash.
I had to pause a moment and ask myself if I would have been gutsy enough to do the same. Would I approach a complete stranger just to sit and talk? Would I offer someone hungry a coffee and a breakfast bar as my husband did?

As I pondered their encounter I thought about the kind of man my husband is. You see, he’s not the type to get up early and read his Bible every single day, and he’s not on any committees at church. What you will see him do though, is talk to homeless men, give money to needy strangers, and be kind to people. You know, “be Jesus” to others.

I believe God asks each one of us to step out and “be Jesus.” Sometimes, though, we get so consumed with everyday life we just don’t do it, or we say we’ll do it later because we don’t have time now.

I also believe that God doesn’t ask us to do anything that He hasn’t already prepared us for. You see, my husband was homeless as a teenager. He was forced to live on his own from the time he was 15 years old. He learned to find shelter in snowdrifts, basements, and abandoned cars. He has a heart for the unlovely, the runaways, and those whose clothes aren’t so clean.

We each have gifts, talents and past experiences that allow us to reach out and touch others in ways that will be meaningful to them. It often doesn’t cost us more than a cup of coffee to do so. What experiences or passions do you have that would make you a perfect candidate to reach out to someone today?

Dear God, open my eyes to the people around me so I can make a difference to someone else. I know the circumstances of my life are not left in vain when I offer myself to You and Your service. Provide a way for me to “be Jesus” to someone today. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


’tis the season

this survey has given me a reason to blog. thanks ging!

1. wrapping paper or gift bags? i use both. equally. mostly, it depends on the size and shape of the package. (that’s what she said!)

2. real tree or artificial? artificial. we would have a sneeze fest in our house if we got a real one. although i do enjoy the smell. i say, why not burn some evergreen oil from bath and body works? it’s lovely and almost smells like the real thing.

3. when do you put up the tree? usually after or on thanksgiving day. we put ours up the week before this year. we just couldn’t wait!

4. when do you take the tree down? sometime in january. although one year we left it up until the end of february. or was it march? either way, it was up a really long time!

5. do you like eggnog? nope. i like boiled custard. it’s eggnog without the nutmeg. yum yum yum

6. favorite gift received as a child? hmm… probably my pink bike that i rode forever and ever. loved that thing! it even came with the tassels on the handlebars!

7. hardest person to buy for? my grandmother… what do you get your grandmother?

8. easiest person to buy for? my aunt jerri. she’s pretty simple and easy to please. she always tells me that i’m the best gift she could get. aww…

9. do you have a nativity scene? nope. kinda puts God on too small of a scale for me… and i think they can be somewhat tacky and kitschy.

10. mail or email christmas cards? i love to get them in the mail but for 3 years now have failed to do so myself. lame. i know.

11. worst christmas gift you ever received? giftcards. please don’t buy me plastic.

12. favorite christmas movie? a charlie brown christmas

13. when do you start shopping for christmas? november-ish

14. have you ever recycled a christmas present? yeppers. one person’s trash is another man’s treasure.

15. favorite thing to eat at christmas? oh gosh… usually anything we have is great. i do love the boiled custard and ambrosia

16. lights on the tree? you betcha! pre-lit preferably.

17. favorite christmas song? o holy night

18. travel at christmas or stay home? staying home this year.

19. can you name all of santa’s reindeer? you know dasher and dancer and prancer and vixen. comet and cupid and donner and blizten. but do you recall, the most famous reindeer of all?!

20. angel on the tree top or a star? star and it’s beautiful!

21. open presents on christmas eve or morning? mid day on christmas day. after a late breakfast.

22. most annoying thing about this time of the year? radio stations all playing the same songs over and over and over and over and over… oh, and the fact that people get more grumpy this time of the year than they do at tax season!

23. favorite ornaments? don’t really have one. i’m pretty basic. we have silver, white, and red ornaments on our tree.

24. stockings? sort of. we need to invest in some really nice ones for us. right now we have one really big one and one itsy bitsy one.

25. take turns opening presents? sort of. we kinda all go at it. except for jason. he likes to watch everyone go first. then open his.

26. what do you want for christmas this year? a desk chair. we have two desks and have to share a chair. makes things a little bit tricky at time.

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