A Year of Smiles – Day 34

cheering-smiley-faceReason to SMILE #34: YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS

“Seriously!” I screamed to myself.  “Did she really just say that?”

I was standing in the church hallway receiving Christmas shoe boxes from a local school organization.  The organization was represented by three ladies, one of whom was a member of a church in a neighboring town.  We chatted a while about our collection efforts.  After revealing the number of boxes collected by my church, the neighboring church member asked, “That’s all?”  Then she continued to inform me of the great number of boxes collected by her church and how dedicated her church was to the shoe box ministry.

To say the least, I was offended.  How dare she belittle our giving!  We had collected more boxes than the year before and I was extremely proud of what we had done.  I tried not to let my emotions get the best of me but I made sure to give my church praise for their efforts.  Considering the size of our congregation and the few years that we had been participating in the shoe box ministry, our offering of shoe boxes was most definitely an accomplishment.

I fumed for quite a while that afternoon over this exchange.  I vented to the youth director and later, I vented to one of the children’s volunteers.  Then, it hit me.  Why did it matter to me what this one person thought?  Who were we doing this for anyway?  Wasn’t it for the children?  Wasn’t it for God?  Yes and yes!  My church set out to honor God by packing shoe boxes for children who would not receive Christmas presents (or the Gospel) otherwise.  We set a goal and we exceeded it!  I was proud and I knew God was pleased, too.  And to memorialize our accomplishment, I filled social media with my praise and thanks for my church and a job well done.

You know.  It is okay to be proud of your accomplishments.  You can toot your own horn every now and then.  (Just keep that ego in check! 😉 )  The world is filled with people who will belittle your achievements, your input and your hard work.  Don’t listen to them.  Remember the widow’s mite in Mark 12:41-44?  I’m sure this widow was mocked for giving such a small offering but she gave anyway.  And to God, her gift was considered greater than all of the other amounts given because the widow gave all that she had.  God was honored and this widow could hold her head high.

So, what about you?  What have you accomplished?  Have you put your God-given skills and talents to good use?  Have you set goals, given your all and accomplished these goals?  Then you, my friend, can hold your head high.  You can pat yourself on the back, ignore the Negative Nellies and SMILE knowing that you have not only made yourself proud but you have made your Heavenly Father proud, as well.

 

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