But, we persevered. One of the things that I hoped to focus on this summer was service to others. I realized that in our sports centered year last year we had missed many opportunities to serve. So, rather than a summer job, summer schooling, or the like the girls and I would find ways to serve others this past summer. Mostly what we did was to make ourselves available to young mothers who needed help with childcare, at no cost. The girls served a young mother of two children who was on her own while her husband served overseas, they helped watch two young children of another mother who had recently given birth, and were available and used by a number of others. This past fall they have helped to make food for a dear friend as her husband fights cancer. They also come willingly to visit, even thought it's hard, and we usually cry on the way home, we are glad to be of some use.
But, something hit home the other day. Remember that wheat allergy I mentioned? Well, after my poison ivy incident occurred, we learned that not only was I gluten intolerant, but I actually had contact dermatitis when exposed to wheat. So, when I found myself chair/bed bound due to exposure to both wheat and poison ivy my girls took over... cooking, cleaning, changing my ice packs, bringing me food. At the time I was very grateful. Then a friend commented that I was seeing the fruits of the lessons learned over the summer. How funny. When I thought of serving others it never really occurred to me that they would be serving me here at home due to that lesson. Another night found MMH painting the bathroom vanity..."because it needed it, and I wanted to do it," she said; and when I awoke from an antihistamine induced nap I found that WeeOne had cleaned the entire kitchen, even down to the hand washing of pots and pans AND cleaning the trap in the sink. Today it hit home again as WeeOne happily fixed the dryer vent where my larger fingers wouldn't fit. She was 100% pleased with herself for being such a help.
I pray that as they grow older the blessings of serving others continues to unfold in their lives and that they never lose this joy.
25 But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does.
26 If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is worthless. 27 Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.
Jame 1: 24-27