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Mar '11

Time Tithe Update #1

Well, we are into the 3rd week of Lent and I just wanted to give an update on my time tithe. So far, in these 3 weeks, I have tithed 31 hours which, according to my calculations, means that I am right on track! It has been both easier and harder than I imagined. Between Sunday and Wednesday worship and church meetings, a lot of my hours are already met.  However, it is taking a very conscious and concerted effort to get those last hours in each week to meet my goal.  

I’m now always on the lookout for ways I can serve. And, it’s been really neat because I’m finding things everywhere! For example, as most of you know, we are heading to Belize next week to celebrate John’s MBA Graduation (I know, I know, how lucky are we?!?). I was doing some research on where we’ll be staying and came across a website for Holy Cross Anglican School in San Pedro town (the only town on the Caye we’ll be staying on). On their website, they have a wish list of items they request people bring with them to donate to their mission. I looked over the lists and it was such small things: paper, pencils, stickers, small prizes, etc. So, I decided that when we go to Belize, I am going to bring as many items as I can fit in my suitcase. I’ve been emailing with the ladies who work there and they are so appreciative and so uplifting! I even got to go shopping at Big Lots yesterday to buy all the fun toys and had a great time. So, that’s one hour of time tithe but a great experience as well.

That for me has been the best part. Every time I find a new way to serve, I’ve been more uplifted and have been more excited about spending time in service. I went to North Dallas Shared Ministries (a food pantry with a lot of other services) on Saturday and was trained to do the front desk work. It was rather slow (hey, maybe we’ve solved world hunger again Julie and Dad….) but I had such a great time talking to the other volunteers. If you’re ever looking for friends, I recommend scoping the food pantries and homeless shelters for possibilities–truly the Salt of the Earth.

Aaron and I currently listening the book The Happiness Advantage on our drives to work and I’d highly recommend it. Right now, it is talking about how if you focus on positive things, you’ll start to see positive things everywhere. To illustrate this, he asks you to close your eyes for 30 seconds and really focus on the color red. Then, open your eyes and look around. Do Red things now jump out at you everywhere? Try it–It’s a small exercise that proves a much larger point. In the same way, as I focus on service this Lent, I’ve been starting to see service opportunities everywhere. Why just this morning, as I was driving in, I noticed a billboard I hadn’t seen before that simply read: “Do you want to be a Good Samaritan?” And I thought, “Why yes–That’s exactly what I want to be!” I looked up their website this morning (good-sam.com) and it is a Lutheran group that looks like they focus their ministries on Senior services.

Now, the Happiness Advantage isn’t a new idea. Just take a look at Matthew 6: 21 “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”. I’m still discovering what wisdom there is in these few words. Time is my greatest treasure and my heart is happy spending that treasure following Jesus.

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