Have you checked your “care” barometer, lately?
The “care” I am talking about is this kind of care:
2.) Personal Development as care;
3.) Care that involves you being a caring individual in our society.
But sometimes that’s the norm – that we forget about others. We can barely care for ourselves; at times – so how do we manage to reach out to others? I know. I am guilty. I remember once, I was in church, and the pastor was saying if we want to make a difference: “Ask God to help you be a blessing to someone else.”
It was deep that entire week, I felt like I was the most compassionate human being I had been in a long while! I had started something. I believe the lesson was to show me that everyone has needs. And that sometimes we can ANTICIPATE them, if we think ahead.
I am a person who cares for others, and I am so grateful I do. In many ways it’s my profession- as a social worker – yet also in several ways, its also my calling. I care because someone cared for me. To be honest, I am not sure caring would come as easily as it does, or had I not gone through a few situations to cause me to be cared for. And have had people reach out to me, in very merciful ways. I am very thankful God is in my life, because caring took on a new meaning for me when I met a few sisters and brothers who love God, in a very caring and completely selfless way. I remember a time when I was “car-less”. Not careless. (Haha)
My car broke down, and I was living alone and I was devastated. “How was I going to get to work?!
How was I going to go grocery shopping? And how was I going to take care of all my business?” I already felt lonely this particular summer… and I took a break from a relationship- a very needed one – that summer, and it was HOT outside. Things were looking pretty bleak for me. I believe it was a Friday, and my car caught on fire in the parking lot where I work. The engine just blew on me. I remember having tons of hope, though. I was encouraged. Why… I don’t know, but I just began to count my blessings, because there were so many things going well for me, that I couldn’t complain. I wasn’t working that summer, and I found out I could get employment during the summer months, and I wasn’t even expecting it. As surprised as I was, I was completely hopeful things would work out. I went to church that Sunday with a smile on my face, and telling every one it would work out, just by a testimony, and I as thanking God. After church, a couple came to me and said , “Hey, I have a car you can use its our second car, we don’t use it very much, but we’d like to bless you.” Another friend, said: ” I am going out of town for two weeks, and you are welcome to hold the keys to mine.” I was shocked! These two persons will be forever imprinted on my life and a part of my compassion list of people who care.. I still love them very much to this day. And not just because they gave me something, but because I saw God in their actions, and they trusted me with something valuable. They made me smile and believe God even more.
I have had aunts, friends, and people in my life who knew me and knew how devastated, broken, feeling unloved and hurt I have been in situations and man,… when you are down, and you have even more to struggle with, as a result of being down – it’s just good to have someone reach out, and love on you. I try to remember that feeling, because it helps to know you are in valued in that way and people care about you.
It feels really, really good, to have someone come and give you a makeover to your office when you feel so disorganized – (my girlfriend Steph, in Texas); or someone to give you the keys to a car when you have none (my former church member friends in NY), or for someone to buy you a meal when you are starving and have no money. ( My friend and sister in Christ in everywhere America.) Smile.
I was once even was kicked out of someone’s home, and had no place to go, and a friend stepped in and opened up their home to me! I have been on BOTH ends, and I tell you, as great as it felt to receive, it feels even better to give.
Just today, I was out with my best friend – and we got pedicures – and we just had lunch together. ( Uh… that would be my husband. But don’t tell him I told you that!) Haha…. And that was self-care. Was it expensive? Sure was… but it felt so good to be pampered, and his smile- worth a million to offer him that experience! Having done this for the first time, for him – it was priceless.
We all need a little pampering sometime. Ask your self how you can be instrumental in this process and give yourself some time, once a month, at least to :
So I admonish you, WATCH who God has sent to cross your path. Be aware of those around you. Love on them. Pay attention to detail in your life, and how you benefit from being in right relationship with them. Feel their sorrow with them. Ask them if they need anything. Call them and tell them you love them, even if it does mean feeling vulnerable for a moment. It’s ok. And you will see them turn toward you, or turn a little closer towards God, if that’s the hope you desire to give. I have learned so much from such giving people in my life about how to treat others when they are down.
And ASK yourself?
What’s my spirit and soul like today?
Do I feel drained, out of touch with myself?
Has life been a little foggy, lately…. Then COMMIT to self care.
God can work even greater in you, when you are open and have such a surrendered heart.
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