Thursday, July 21, 2011

I am rich!

Owen: Nikki, God will give you the desires of your heart. He will give you anything you ask for.
April: Well, my desire is to be rich!!
Owen: What are you talking about?? You are rich! Have you seen your house? You have 2 beautiful kids, you're alive!

After having this conversation with some of our best friends, I reflected on it further, which is something I don't usually do. For some reason though, I just couldn't shake what Owen had said. It really made me think about my life.

Unfortunately, I've had a couple close friends (or people who I thought were friends) break off our friendship simply because of what we have; our things. Possessions; here today and gone tomorrow. I can't even describe to you how hurt I was (and still am) over this falling out. Everything we have, everything, is simply because God has given it to us. I have done nothing to earn or deserve what I have; I am a sinful human who screws up all the time. But, I know that the "stuff" is just one way in which God shows his love for us for obeying him. My kids, my health, my house, even my crappy car are all gifts! Why some people feel the need to judge us for our things is beyond me... I just want to be thankful and share the things in my life that I love and have been blessed with, to others. Isn't that what it's all about? Love one another.

I have to start having a Godly mindset...I am rich! Rich in God's eyes. My thought when Owen made that comment was, "I want to be rich; filthy stinkin' rich! Money to buy anything and everything! No need to stress over bills, food, vacation, etc.". But I was thinking of richness from the world's mentality. Just because I don't drive a brand new car or live in a million dollar house doesn't mean I'm not rich. God thinks I am and his opinion is all that matters.

1 Timothy 6:17-19 Tell those rich in this world's wealth to quit being so full of themselves and so obsessed with money, which is here today and gone tomorrow. Tell them to go after God, who piles on all the riches we could ever manage—to do good, to be rich in helping others, to be extravagantly generous. If they do that, they'll build a treasury that will last, gaining life that is truly life.

Famine and Adoption

I was reading one of my favorite magazines, "The Week" and came across an article on the rising famine epidemic in Africa (Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya). Then again tonight on the NBC Nightly News, there was another story about this dreadful problem. It was so difficult for me to watch the images of people being driven from their homes in search of food and water. My heart broke over the thousands of children who are dying because of this; little aid is being provided and with nothing else left, they simply die from starvation. Coincidentally, I was in the middle of feeding Isaiah his bottle and looked down at him; my chunky baby, who has formula and food at his disposal. His cheeks look like they could explode, he has fat rolls on his thighs that are worse than mine and, as my brother says, he has "rubber bands" around his wrists.
I have several friends who have adopted and who are wanting to adopt a child from another country. I know so many wonder why anyone would even want to adopt another child, and even if that were the case, why a child from another country when there are plenty of kids in America who need homes. These questions can simply be answered by the pictures below. The children in America don't have these conditions; even the one's in foster care are better off then any child from a third world country. How could anyone not look at one of these children and not want to scoop them up and love on them?? I just hope one day I get that chance.

"Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what's coming to you in this kingdom. It's been ready for you since the world's foundation. And here's why:

I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me.'

"Then those 'sheep' are going to say, 'Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?' Then the King will say, 'I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me—you did it to me.'

"Then he will turn to the 'goats,' the ones on his left, and say, 'Get out, worthless goats! You're good for nothing but the fires of hell. And why? Because—

I was hungry and you gave me no meal,
I was thirsty and you gave me no drink,
I was homeless and you gave me no bed,
I was shivering and you gave me no clothes,
Sick and in prison, and you never visited.'

"Then those 'goats' are going to say, 'Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry or thirsty or homeless or shivering or sick or in prison and didn't help?'

"He will answer them, 'I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you failed to do one of these things to someone who was being overlooked or ignored, that was me—you failed to do it to me.'

Matthew 25:34-45