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Hey Friends ~

As we enter into this Thanksgiving week/pre-Christmas season, I need your wisdom!

First, some background…

One of my close relatives works at a local public school with emotionally impaired children ages 3-5. This relative is the most kind, hard-working, and generous woman I know ~ so it is a perfect environment for her to work.

However, some of the stories she shares with me (without disclosing names, of course) are heart-breaking, to say the least.

Most of the kids come from homes with little to no money, minimal parental support, and lack the basic everyday living necessities. Stuff like coats. hats. underwear.

Typically we pass along to her any coats, hats, and mittens my kids have outgrown. I was amazed to hear how many kids get off the bus in the freezing cold (remember, I live in Michigan!) without wearing anything to keep them warm.

This week my relative called to see if Benj had another coat he had outgrown. She also asked if he had any old underwear.


Yes, underwear.

One boy at her school arrives most days with pants that are broken, zippers that won’t zip, and no underwear.

On Friday, the bus driver didn’t want to help him, and said to my relative, “The boy can’t even keep his pants up and smells like pee everyday. Yuck”

When I heard this story, my heart broke.

And God is using this real life example to mess with me in the best possible way.

When I think of the many things I’m grateful for ~ I forget to say I’m thankful we have the undergarments (and outer garments) that we need. Thank You, God.

As we enter in the Christmas season (even though it’s still November), and we are bombarded with Black Friday ads (are they driving anyone else crazy?!)…I think about this little boy who has no underwear and smells like pee and no one cares (but my relative).

I don’t need one more blanket, or appliance, or even new sparkly sweater. Instead I’ll buy some size 4T underwear.

As my kids make their lists of stuff they want, when truth be told we have a basement filled with unplayed trinkets and toys, I think of this little boy and countless boys and girls like him in my neighborhood, my community, the world.

Thank You, God, for all of our stuff. We don’t need more ~ we just need more of You.

How do we live differently in a culture that shouts, “Buy me. You need me. Life is all about stuff”?????

I miss the days I worked at The Salvation Army with homeless teen moms and their kids.

I want to be reminded daily of the needs, the opportunities, the call.

I don’t want to get so comfortable, complacent, lukewarm in my faith that I forget that there is a lost and hurting world and God wants us to be a light that shines bright for Him.

An agent of Truth, hope and healing.

A reflector of His love and generosity and kindness.

This year I am more determined than ever to get my kids to think outside themselves. And that starts with me.

As we enter into this Thanksgiving week, I am grateful for a God who supplies all of my needs, family and friends (like you!) to journey with along the way, and the opportunity to bring hope and joy (and underwear) to others in Jesus name.

*She Sparkles* friends, I’d love to hear from you. How do you live differently in a culture that shouts, “Life is all about stuff”? How have you reached out to help those in need in your community? Please share your stories and ideas!!!

Thanks for stopping by *She Sparkles*. God’s richest blessings to you!

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