Sunday, December 14, 2008

A Season For Giving

About a week ago Peter at http://blog.hafchurch.org/peter/ issued a challenge called "The 12 Days of Christmas Challenge". It is a challenge to go beyond the normal and give sacrificially each day up until Christmas. If you would like to get in on the challenge stop by his website and check it out further.

I did decide to take his challenge and starting last week, I began to pray. As I prayed, I began by asking God to reveal how I could give for the next 12 days. What would He want me to do? He began to flood ideas into my mind and unfold many things I could do that would be from a sacrificial heart.

Yesterday I spent the majority of my day helping a couple from church move and unpack. There is nothing I hate more than moving and usually if I can get out of it I do. Yesterday was different; it was a time that I put my own desires aside and went to help out. The couple had to move because the wife could no longer climb the 3 flights of stairs to there apartment. She has back problems and is having major back surgery in January. The husband had a stroke over 20 years ago and only has use of one arm. It was so amazing to see so many come together to help those in need. They were moved and completely unpacked in five hours. I have never seen anything like it.

Today God laid on my heart to tell my husband that I did not want him to buy me a Christmas present. Instead, I told him I would like to help someone that needs it with the money. In Sunday school this morning an announcement was made that the family our class agreed to provide Christmas dinner for really needs more than just food provided. They really needed towels because they only have 4 towels. All my husband could do was look at me as his eyes welled up.

I have to give you some background on this decision. Last Thursday, we received a check in the mail that was unexpected. It was for a debt that my husband had forgiven. When my father in-law passed away several years ago he was owed some money from a land purchase. We had tried to collect the money but had not been successful. About a month ago my husband at the prompting of God sent a letter to the man that owed us. He shared what God had done in his life and then told him we were considering the debt paid in full. The letter this man sent with the check said he was planning to pay the debt in full and here was a partial payment.

Up until we received this check, we were not going to buy each other a present for Christmas because money was so tight. When the check came, my husband began asking what I would like to have. I told him several things that tickled my fancy. But today I began to think about how I really didn't need any of the things I told him about. I have so much and others have so little. So I will be buying towels and maybe some other items this family needs with my Christmas present this year. I don't feel the least bit deprived by this decision. In fact, it has made my spirit soar.

I will update more of what God has me do later in the week.... Until then check out Peter’s sight and take the challenge yourself. I dare you!

4 comments:

Peter P said...

Awesome Sherri,

I was just sitting down to email you to ask how the giving was going and see if any of the people you have challenged with it have taken the up the Challenge when your post popped up in my rss reader.

I am so glad that you are seeing God moving and recognizing it as Him.

What is so incredible to me is that God has this stuff lined up for every one of us every day and yet we rarely get to see it because we are not open to Him leading us.

This will be a lifechanging experience for everyone who takes part (and I have another challenge for the new year which should be as life changing!)

God bless you. I'm praying for you and everyone who is taking part.

Peter

Sherri Watt said...

Thanks Peter,

I am praying for you as well my friend. I hope it is life changing for those that have commited to it.

God Bless

Mike said...

I read this and realized how selfish I am.

Dpcbb said...

My wife and I bought each other a couple of small presents at the last minute this year. My wife had been asking what I want. And I had been asking her the same. Neither of us could come up with anything we really wanted (without laying several thousand dollars that we don't have at the moment).

But it got me thinking. I felt somewhat selfish that I don't really want for anything. And I began to think of how many others wouldn't even have a decent meal on Christmas.

Christmas used to be a time for getting things I have wanted all year, but wouldn't buy myself. But over the last few years, the purchases I look forward to the most are the gifts we choose from the "angel" tree. I think I was the first one to pick an angel off the tree this year and I had the best time buying those presents.