Giving 40!!

Sunday I sent out an email that included the following;

“Lent is upon us! Did you know? Lent is from the Anglo-Saxon word lengten, which means spring. [From Modern Catholic Dictionary by John Hardon, S.J.]”

“During Lent we often think of “giving things up” i.e candy, chocolate, coffee, etc. When in fact; it is a time to reflect on our lives, and take hold of opportunities to live richer, sin free lives. It is “leaving behind an old way of living and acting in order to embrace new life in Christ.”

“That said, I have decided this year (since my children are so young we are going to commit to a minimum of 40 hours of service over the rest of the year. Although, I would love to complete 40 hours of service during lent alone I do not know that our schedule allows for such a commitment (we shall see!)”.

“So yes, we are doing approximately 5 hours of service a month!! In such a self centered world I think it is important to teach my children that the sun does not rise and set for him/her alone!!”

“So, how does this affect you? Along the way we maybe inviting you to serve along way or present opportunities of “Almsgiving” as a sign of our care for those in need and an expression of our gratitude for all that God has given to us.”

First up;

A family that my children and I know (they are in our MOPS group as well as a few homeschool groups we associate with!) is in need!! Their home caught fire Saturday morning. (SIDE NOTE: We do not know this family personally…simply have exchanged smiles, a few words here and there. A sweet family indeed and most deserving as I myself can not imagine losing everything.) Did I mention this family has 10 kids?

“The kids and I will be putting together “little” care packages for each of the 10 children so I would LOVE your help in doing so :)”

SOOO…that was the plan, right?

Well, my home has since been turned into a full fledge donation center..skip the care packages! I quickly came to realize the amount of donations coming in for this family far exceeds anything that I could put in a few boxes. The need was great and God has certainly provided. The family is doing well, I have since been in contact with Mom several times. Donations are all being held at a kind woman’s home who has given up her garage for the time being to store everything. There is talk of a sort of “rummage” sale to raise money for the family. Since the out pouring love, prayers, and generosity far exceeds what they themselves and surely myself expected.

Remember I was thinking care packages?! Here is roughly what has been collect in just “5” days (keep in mind this is ONLY what I have here…there are several others “housing” things)

Toys (legos, play sets, etc.)
Soap (bar and liquid)
Hair stuff (combs, brushes,  pony holders)
Clothes (all sizes)
pantry items (beans, tomatoes, applesauce)
cereal and snacks
gift cards…

And the list continues…the outpouring love (again) for a family which I barely know has been a true testament as to the number of lives we do not know we touch on a daily basis. I can guarantee this family had no idea how many would come forth to “help” them. It is amazing to see the number of people they (a family of 12) have “touched” over the years. So I leave you with this….

Although, we may only exchange a smile, a quick “hello”, or no “exchange” of communication at all with someone….that “someone” may just be the person/s who will help you along the way when you need it the most.

The saying “think before you act!” There is something to be said about “nice” people. And this local family truly “ranks among some of the nicest” clearly by the shear amount of support seen in a just a few short days!