craft verb \'kraft\ to create with care, skill and intention

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

My hope for this space

A friend recently brought to the forefront of my mind the concept of "sacrificial giving." That is, giving until it hurts a little, or at least until you can feel it. It's great to donate our pocket change or our old household items to charitable organizations and I'm not suggesting that we should stop doing that. But I am suggesting that we shouldn't stop there. Let's face it, that sort of incidental giving really doesn't cost us anything. Those old clothes would end up in the garbage if there weren't groups willing to take them off our hands.

And even when I do give in larger amounts, say twenty bucks here and there, it's generally because I know we won't miss that amount at that time. And because I've always put a value on giving quietly, I don't usually say anything about it - even to my family. But since my friend planted this "sacrificial giving" seed in my heart, I realize that giving is an activity we should do as a family. God has been keeping me up at night with this, y'all. My biggest goal in the coming year is to be more intentional about giving and to involve my children in the process.

I am creating this space as a place for me to work all of this out. Because I enjoy crafting, and because I think that hands-on projects can be more meaningful to kids than simply writing a check, I am hoping to focus on a lot of crafty projects. Sometimes I may include crafty projects that don't involve charitable giving just because I think that making things by hand can make my family and my world a better place.

Here are some guidelines I will try to follow:
  • Since I would like to create a kinder and gentler world, I will begin by being kinder and gentler to myself. It is important to me to be a good person, but I'm never as good as I might hope to be. This is not a space to beat myself up over shortcomings, but is a place to celebrate effort and steps in the right direction.
  • I will endeavor to focus on small steps and moderation. I will not try to steer my family toward a lifestyle of austere piety. My husband assures me that the reality of that lifestyle is not nearly as romantic as the image I have in my mind. Plus, this seems like the quickest way to guarantee failure (or mutiny, in my family).
  • I will keep it real. I love me some Martha Stewart, but I am not her. I'm not Mother Teresa, either. I'm just me. I'm trying to be a better me, but I am just me nonetheless. This is a place for working things out.
  • I will not control-freak the fun out of it. 'Nuff said.

I guess that's about all for now. I would love to have some company on this little journey, so feel free to hop on board!

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