Sunday, November 13, 2011

Faith Without Deeds {Happy Day Project}

This post started a random acts of kindness revolution of sorts.

I don't think that was the intent.

That's the funny thing about kindness's contagious.

Two more bloggers {you can read about them both here and here} decided to keep the kindness going and thus "The Happy Day Project" was born.


happy day

I was inspired and accepted their challenge.

With trepidation.

You see, I'd love to tell you that I am just oozing with acts of kindness for others.

That huge chunks of my days are spent entirely thinking about what I could do for others.

But it would all be lies.

I struggle with this folks.

Big time.

"What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone? Suppose you see a brother or sister who has no food or clothing, and you say, “Good-bye and have a good day; stay warm and eat well”—but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do? So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless." James 2:14-17


This walking out my faith thing is an ongoing process of conviction, obedience, and change.

This challenge was all three.


Day One's challenge was to "Treat a Neighbor".

We picked a family that had moved in two doors down over the summer.

We had yet to ever meet them. ::hangs head in shame::


They loved our goodies and were super appreciative of the gesture.

Turns out we were the first people to welcome them to the neighborhood.

I know. Sad.


Day 2 was "Hand Written Note Day"

I knew right away that I wanted us to write letters to my grandpa.

My only living grandparent.

But I was also challeged to send a letter to this lady.

She has a new baby, and stage four rectal cancer which has now spread to her lungs.

I even had my kids write to her as well.



When challenged to write a letter of encouragement to a woman they did not even know, my children looked at me as though I was asking them to speak a foreign language.

I was so convicted.

All this time I thought I was teaching them so much.

Turns out I was teaching them so little.

What had I been doing all this time???

Teaching them to love Jesus and to love others...but never showing them how to by example.

Sure we give to charities and sometimes take meals to new moms and folks in need at our church.

But when had they seen me doing for others without a cause or a special reason...just for the heck of it?

When had they seen me daily thinking of what I could do for others?

Making it a natural part of daily life to be burdened for others?


The reactions of my children led me to one realization...this was EXACTLY what I was supposed to be doing.

I was determined at this point to fully submit to the process...and whatever God would ask me to do.


I knew this was no longer a fun challenge I signed up for in the blog community.

I knew I would never be the same.



Day 3 was "Gift Card for Homeless"

My sister lives in downtown Nashville so I knew immediately that I would be using her knowledge of the city to help me with this.

Little did I know that when I told her what I was doing, and asked if she could point me in the right direction, she too would be compelled to get involved and give too. Contagious.

Armed with 3 gift cards to a local grocery store, I prayed that God would put us in the path of exactly who He intended us to help.

I was drawn to a certain man on the corner that we had encountered as we entered the we went back.

We parked so that we could walk up to him, personally give him the card, and hopefully talk with him a little.

He was precious. So gracious. So nice.

I just wasn't prepared for what happened next.

As we stood there talking to him, a car stopped at the light yelled for us to come over. They had a warm throw {still in packaging} that they wanted us to give to him.

I couldn't get over it. I was wrecked. And as we walked back to our car I was overcome with emotion. One random act of kindness had prompted another. How cool was that?!?! Contagious.

We encountered two others in need and my sister was even able to help one man up a hill in his wheelchair. He was so grateful. Smiling from ear to ear.

My cup runneth over.

I was filled with a joy I had honestly never felt before.

And the best part?

My kids said their only regret was that they hadn't brought their own money and that they wished we could have spent more time handing out cards. Contagious.

I wasn't the only one being changed.

Day 4 was "Book For a Friend"

I prayed about the book and the friend.

Can't wait to hear about how God uses it.

Unfortunately I was plagued with a horrible head and chest cold the rest of the week.

I was unable to complete days 5, 6, and 7.

BUT God still had plans for me.

On Monday as I sat at the window waiting to pay for my Starbucks, I felt God prompting me to pay for the car behind me.

I'm gonna be honest here folks...this was a scary thought for me. Starbucks is not cheap and I had no idea what they had ordered or how many people were ordering in the car even.

I did it anyway.

Oh the look on the Starbucks guy's face.


Also I could not stop thinking about the man on the corner in Nashville.

I went to the store and put together a care package of sorts for him.

We will be taking it to him this weekend and I simply cannot wait.


**It took me 3 days to try and write this post.

The words just would not come easy.

Something I had to digest.

I have been affected by this kindness thing in a way I never saw coming a way that words just do not seem sufficient.

I beg of you this...challenge yourself for just ONE day.

Put one foot in front of the other and just act in kindness {randomly} towards someone else.

Don't think about it too long.

We think way too much people.

Don't worry if it seems silly.

Don't worry about their reaction.

Just act.

"You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ Acts 20:35

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