Tuesday, September 28, 2010

social justice

Thursday September 23 was SocialGood Day promoted by the RED campaign. Social good or social justice is kind of a buzz word these days. I guess I would define social good/justice as humanity impartially  distributing goods to those who are not able to get the basic necessities of life. Is that good or bad? Can it work? Will it change the world or make it a better place? The Bono Syndrome, the Oprahites and other celebrity influences say yes it can work and it is good.  Hmmm...I try to do good. The gorgeous grandma club met on Thurs also. We decorated the cutest flip flops and are planning on donating them to a domestic violence shelter. 
I try to imagine little girls eyes lighting up when they see a fun, colorful, cute pair of shoes they can pick out themselves and keep. Clearing some of the sorrow and confusion only for a moment, while they slip on the perfect pair for them.  Mothers feeling  relieved and almost trusting  for a moment. Someone cared about their child. The hurt and bruises of yesterday will subside in that instant. That's our goal. It sounds good.  I think it can be true, but I also know that a simple pair of flip flops is not going to change  iniquities that have probably been past down through the generations. 
Social justice is good. Jesus said in Matthew 25:34-46 in the Bible that when we do a good deed to our brother or sister even to the least of them we have done it to Him. He also says when we don't help we aren't helping Him. (my paraphrase)
The question is does it really change lives? I think it does change a feeling, bringing hope to a desperate situation or food to  an empty stomach, a sickness can be gotten under control or a person can be removed from a horrible situation. But change the world through kind gestures? I'm not sure about that.
There is a story in the Bible about a woman who took an expensive bottle of perfume and poured it over Jesus' head. Some who were watching this woman waste this bottle of perfume were dumbfounded and critical of her. "For this perfume might have been sold for over 300 denarii and the money given to the poor"(Mark 14:5) But Jesus said something we wouldn't expect of Him ...He said "For you always have the poor with you , and whenever you wish you can do good to them; but you do not always have Me" (Mark 14:7) He was speaking in regard to the fact that He would soon die and the service and worship actions of this woman while He was there with them moved  His heart. She actually got it!
Jesus came to change the world! The good news is that through His death AND resurrection from the dead He is able to change the heart of man through the power of the Holy Spirit. Because I believe and received what Jesus did for me I am no longer a slave to sin. I can live my life knowing that there was One who overcame the sins of this world. Do I still sin? yes but it is not my desire any longer. I desire to love. Jesus is Love and His love is unconditional. He does not require anything of me only believe. Its simple.
For 2,000 years people have shared testimonies of being transformed and delivered from addictions, self-hatred, abuse, depression etc. Those women and children at the shelter will hear about the saving and transforming power of a Man who came to set them free from the god of this world. They will learn about the great Love Jesus and the Father has for them. Father and Jesus together devised a plan that would bring us back to the place they intended for us in the beginning. (Isaiah 53:10 Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him) Jesus would conquer the power of sin on the cross and it would no longer have power over us! .
Isaiah 53:3-5 He is despised and rejected by men. A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. Surely He bore our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed him stricken. Smitten by God and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the Chastisement for our peace was upon Him. and by his stripes we are healed.
Do you see anything in these passages that you suffer from? Jesus understands and overcame it on the cross. Surrender it to Him and let Him change and heal your heart by the same powerful Spirit that rose Him from the dead!
We may never see poverty eradicated or every pandemic disease vanish from life on this earth. Our circumstances my not change but we can have peace and be free from torment. The Bible promises that one day our Saviour will come back. Every knee will bow and those who have chosen the One who sacrificed His life for us will live forever with Him with no more sorrow.
I will continue to help or even endorse anyone who wants to help the less fortunate. I have seen first hand what a starving child looks like. If they are not preaching Christ at least they are keeping these ones alive to have an opportunity to make their own decision about who Jesus is.
The children at the shelter will not only get a fun pair of flip flops but they will hear about a loving Father who can change their lives for eternity! Now that can change a world!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Sock Monkeys!

At the gorgeous grandma club we try to make items for charities that are reasonably easy to figure out. Some of us are good sewers and some of us ...well lets just say ...are not. Is sewers and sewers spelled the same???? Well I do know one thing and that is none of us, no not one, smells! I'm trying to say sew-er not sew-er! Well now..see.. I think I figured that one out! It was reasonably easy. Did you figure it out? Well come join us anyway.
I'm trying to talk about how reasonably easy it was to make sock monkeys! You can buy a kit right off the Internet. Try rockford red heel socks. They are 9.95 for 2 pair of socks with the pattern.. One of our talented grandmas actually teaches sewing in her home. She has a room with 8 or 10 sewing machines and a large table in the middle for pinning, cutting, stuffing and chatter. It's so perfect!
We had arms and legs and big smiley lips jutting out in all directions as we carefully and methodically put our monkeys together. We made one for our grandbaby and one for the Crisis Nursery here in our community.http://www.childcrisis.org/

In the end we had made some adorable little monkeys. Some sat at my house for a couple of weeks before I was able to get them to the crisis nursery. I had grown very attached to seeing their smiling faces each morning when I went to the kitchen for my cup of coffee. In fact they were becoming my friends....kind of scary, I know. My grandma friends had  put so much time and love into them and each monkey really did have their own little personality.

When I finally was able to take them to their new home at the crisis nursery, I was shocked that the woman at the front desk told me to just throw them down on the ground near the chair and someone would take them to the back where the children were. I couldn't help myself...."But look...look at these cute monkeys! Aren't they adorable?" I just couldn't throw them on the ground. It was hard enough just parting with them. I swear those monkeys were all looking at me with pitiful eyes.
"Oh they are cute!" she proclaimed," Let me see one. The children will love these!" Awwww. thank you. Yes! I saw the monkeys eyes light up. They did. I think they did or maybe....I think its seamstress.. some of us are good seamstress's and some of us are not!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

friends that last a lifetime

 My grandma friend, Oma. She's one of the fab five!
Oma has been my friend for 30 years! We met when we were both pregnant with our second child. Man that was a long time ago...pause...She was interviewing me with another lady for a place in their babysitting
co-op. I'm not sure if anyone still does babysitting co-ops. They were the best. You exchanged babysitting by giving tokens instead of money. Everyone started out with the same amount of tokens. You lost some by giving them to someone who watched your children or gained some by watching their children. Simple.
Back to the interview...I can still see us three sitting in my Jack Daniels decorated living room. Yep I had Jack Daniels wall paper, signs and other paraphernalia decorating the shelves and tables. I wouldn't really say it was my favorite design but my husband absolutely loved it and it fit my rustic decor. My husband had accumulated all this stuff from working at the infamous Minder Binder bar and grill.
I'm not sure what those two ladies thought when they looked around. They didn't seem to be concerned about our drinking habits. I don't recall them asking any questions about that. Maybe they just thought there was hope for us. My husband and I had just recently gotten saved and probably in their great maturity and wisdom they figured they should let the Great One do the convicting. And they were right. My husband eventually sold all at a garage sale:) God is good!
We passed the big interview and Oma and I became friends. She eventually had 3 girls and I 2 boys. We camped, home schooled, and went to church together over the years. Yes, we've had our ups and downs, hard knocks and shoulders to cry on and even a time when we took a little break from each other. But today we enjoy watching our children grow into moms and dads with families of their own.( check out Omas daughter's blog-cultivating lives- on my blog list) Now enjoying the best part...GRANDCHILDREN.
There' nothing so special as a friend that lasts a life time. I am grateful for my once mom friend and now grandma girlfriend, Oma.

                                                                                  Tell me what makes your friendship special....