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Thursday, December 06, 2012

When You Think You Have Nothing to Offer

Do you remember the holiday classic, The Little Drummer Boy
The wise men bring gifts to the baby Jesus, and there's a moment in the story, when the little boy realizes he has nothing to give to the newborn king.  Then, someone reminds him that he has a drum, his only possession.  So the little drummer boy offers all that he has, and plays a song for his holy audience.

I have often felt that I have little to offer.  When I compare my skills and talents to others, I doubt my own ability to help someone.  In a new town, I don't know many people, so how could I possibly gather a group of volunteers to bring about a Christmas miracle?

About a week ago, God reminded me that He can use the little bit we are faithful with.


We had been promising the older kids that we would take them to see a movie over Thanksgiving break after our vacation plans were cancelled.  And since they cleaned their rooms and had an early release day one Monday, I managed to make good on that promise :-)  

On our way home, we noticed a giant plume of dark smoke behind the trees nearby.  We wondered what would have caused so much smoke.  Then, we watched as rescue vehicles zipped by with sirens and lights alerting us to the emergency.  At least a dozen screamed past us, and I suggested that maybe we should say a little prayer for anyone involved in the fire.  

My daughter replied, "I already did."

That evening, after the kids were in bed, I looked up the local news and found that an apartment building had went up in flames, and at least nine families had been effected. So that's what happened, I thought.  Curiosity satisfied, I went to bed.


The next morning, an acquaintance, posted a need on facebook for her friend who had lost her home in a fire.  Coincidence?  I asked her for confirmation, and found out that a single mom of three was indeed involved in the fire my family noticed after a trip to the movies and in the news article I researched the night before.  

God had placed all this at my attention on purpose.


Immediately, I felt involved.  Not because I knew anyone, but because my heart was somehow invested.  What could I do?  My connections are a state away.  I have very little to donate, since we had purged so much during our move.

It didn't seem like much, but I had a voice and a few new friends nearby. 

Turns out it was all God needed.  I mean, seriously, he's God.  Why did I even pause?

In four days, a band of moms I know, gathered up household items, food, and clothes for a stranger.  And another family happened to be moving away, leaving behind furniture to donate.  A moving truck was offered, as well as, volunteers with muscles and time to carry couches and tables up a flight of stairs to a mom's new apartment.  Every couple of hours a new detail fell into place, right up until she scraped up enough money for her first month's rent, and a group of unrelated people blessed an unsuspecting family just weeks before Christmas.

As I peeked through garbage bags and bins of donations before we left, I couldn't believe how the little things people had given were just what she needed: a shower curtain, lamps, a broom, toys for the kids, pots and pans, towels, sheets, Christmas stockings...God had known the needs and alerted a few hearts to offer whatever they had.

And just like that, a miracle happened.

It only took a few open hearts, open hands, and a little mustard seed of brave faith.



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