Tuesday, December 15, 2009

the 12 days of christmas..

two years ago (october) seth lost his job. he was out of work for 4 months. it was a very hard time for us but we made it. by God's amazing grace we had family and friends supporting us financially, and emotionally. one family (who still to this day is anonymous) did something a.ma.zing. the 12 days leading up to christmas they would leave something on our doorstep. every morning we would wake up and a present would be waiting. the kids LOVED IT!! we were so blessed. we always said that when things got better for us we would do that for someone that was in need. well, it's 2 years later and things are better but not huge where we have tons of money to give away. seth does have a job, actually owns his own business now, but we still live paycheck to paycheck and every week we get on our knees praying for God to provide. but as i look on my life and everything i have i am so RICH! praise God we live paycheck to paycheck, atleast we have a paycheck to live on. i have a house, healthy kids, medical insurance, 2 cars, a refrigerator full of food, cable ect...i could go on and on. anyway, i felt like i was waiting until we were wealthy for us to be able to help someone. God stopped that way of thinking real fast and i am so glad he did. who am i anyway, he doesn't need my money to help someone, he just needs me listening and willing to follow HIM. so, this year w/out alot of money we have commited to helping a family in need for 12 days (just as that anonymous family did for us). a few weeks ago we were talking to the kids about the importance of giving and how we wanted our focus this christmas to not be about us and our needs. we told them how we wanted to help someone out for 12 days. they were very excited. smooshie mentioned a family that we had seen in the stater bros. parking lot a few months ago (surprised he remembered) , a family of five living in their car. with much enthusiasm he says "let's buy them a house!!", how sweet the heart of a child. i told him we couldn't buy them a house but we could provide them with food and necessities and hopefully some toys for christmas. so as a family we prayed and all agreed that this would be the family we would help. i was talking to a friend a few days later and she said she wanted to help to. after a few people hearing about it we now have 4 families and a friend helping. so from dec. 13th-dec. 25th we are doing something for them every day. not only are we providing them food and shelter (helping pay for a motel) but we are praying and hoping that they will see the light of Jesus through us. just last night a friend of our's gave us some money for no reason. my first thought was , hmm.. what can i buy with this, and then God knocked me upside the head :) and i realized i should give it away. that was God's way of providing so we could use it for the family. we were able to get them 4 nights in a motel for the week of christmas. they will have a bed and a shelter for christmas, i am so excited :) praise be to God for all of his provisions!! i am not writing this to be prideful and to show what an amazing family we are, far from it. God has humbled me in ways i could never imagine. i don't naturally have a heart for the homeless, and giving is actually very hard for me to do. i am smart with our money almost to a fault where i get stingy with it. i am so blessed though that God has called our family to do this. he always uses the weak , right?? and that is DEFINATLEY us. we are walking in blind faith being obedient to what God has called us as a family to do. this year has been a HUGE year of obedience and trust for us and i am excited to keep living in faith and trusting in God almighty.

"we know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. so we also ought to give up our lives for our brother's and sister's. if someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion- how can God's love be in that person" 1john 3:16-17


susan (germany) said...

This post made me cry. What an amazing gift to this family. I LOVE thinking they will have shelter at Christmastime instead of their car.

And also, what a WONDERFUL gift to your boys!!! I bet they will ALWAYS remember the gift they are giving by helping this family.... even after all toys and things that they themselves receive are long forgotten.

It's hard sometimes to think of ways to teach our kids to have giving hearts. You've found a great way!!! Thanks for sharing!
This was really encouraging to read.

jenni said...

thanks susan :)

Alicia said...

Thank you so much for this post this is the true meaning of Christmas thinking and putting others ahead of ourselves. We love your sweet family:)

Jenn said...

Thanks for being such a true light to others and reminding us all what Christmas is about---sharing God's Son through how we serve and give to others!

DL said...

Jenni, what a beautiful gift you are all giving this family this Christmas! He is knocking on your door and asking...you are anwering His call. I love you dear friend!