Penny Collection

#God, #inspiration, value, worthDo you have a penny collection? My husband and I discovered we are part of the multitude that seemed to collect these coins. For us this wasn’t intentional, it just happened.

Recently we brought our collection out of storage with the plan to roll and exchange them for paper currency. We were surprised to see how many pennies we had tucked away over the years.

The last Canadian penny was minted in 2012. They were discontinued because the cost of producing these coins was more than they were worth. Although not in circulation for several years, we still had an abundance of pennies.

We had begun to count and stack the coins when a grandchild came to visit. She was fascinated by the pennies and we stopped our counting to search for dates representing the birth years of her parents and siblings. Our granddaughter rejoiced each time one was found.

When we searched through the coins we discovered not all shiny pennies were newer ones. Each year came in a variety of conditions. None of this made a difference to their value. Each coin was worth the same amount.

I had plenty of time to consider this as we continued to sort, count and roll thousands of coins over the next few days. Some similarities between life and these pennies came to mind.

My worth is determined by God. He doesn’t just keep those of us who are shiny and attractive but has a purpose for everyone, even those well worn. This was a good reminder that no matter my age or condition I can still bring value to the world.

God is not going to remove us from circulation because it costs more to keep us than we are worth. In His currency, we are each collector editions.

I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. (John 10:28 NIV)

Buried Treasure

#inspiration, treasure, buriedI had every intention of dealing with them last week, and the week before. At the very least, they should have been sorted and counted.

Although I knew it should be done, I didn’t want to, which is why I was still tripping over bags of bottles and cans in my garage. They were taking up valuable space and were also an eyesore I faced every time I entered or exited the garage. It was getting harder to ignore this visible reminder of clutter to be removed.

Only a little dedicated time was needed to deal with these recyclables before they were traded for cash. A reward that turned clutter into something of value should be all the incentive needed to do the necessary work.

I wondered if my procrastination was representative of something deeper. Do I have items of potential value hidden inside that are not being utilized? What would I discover if I sort through the clutter in my mind?

Am I afraid to explore the dreams buried deep within? Are excuses taking the place of action?

As I answer these questions I realize I am the only one responsible for my experience. It’s up to me to take the necessary steps to find the treasure of possibility buried inside and bring it to the surface.

“The difference between who you are and who you want to be is what you do.” Bill Phillips

Will You Take Less?

#God, #inspiration, value, worthIt was time to let go of some items not used in our home. After deciding on prices, my husband took pictures and posted the items for sale online.

Responses started coming in almost immediately. We knew the value of what we were offering and priced everything lower than that. Even so, most inquiries included the phrase, “Will you take less?” They might suggest a lower number or in some cases asked what our lowest price would be.

I found it amusing when one woman told us of her experience selling things online, stating she never negotiated her asking prices and then turned around and asked if we’d take less!

My mind went to times in life I’ve settled for less than I am worth. I have often sold myself short. When I’m not confident of my value, it’s difficult to expect others to appreciate it.

The truth is my life is of great value, as is yours. God loves me so much that he sent his son to die for my sins in order that I can live in Heaven with him forever. He wouldn’t have paid such a high price for me if he didn’t believe I was worthy.

Each day is a gift from him, filled with beauty, challenges and opportunities. The adventure I’m on with the Lord is like nothing I could ever have imagined. Knowing this, how could I possibly settle for less?

“Consider this: The Father has given us his love. He loves us so much that we are actually called God’s dear children. And that’s what we are.” 1 John 3:1 GWT

Re-Tired

#inspiration, #God, serviceWhat do you do with tires that have become too worn to be used safely on your vehicles?

One common use is to make swings for children. Recently I saw old tires used in what I thought was a very unusual, but fitting way.

Where formerly, they carried vehicles on the road, these ones were set into the pavement to serve as speed bumps.

This served as an appropriate analogy for me. As I travel the road of life, there are times when I may not be able to do things I once was capable of. This doesn’t mean my value is gone. When I look for new ways to be of service, God will place me where I can do the most good.

He is more than able to make me what he wants me to be. As I move from one stage of life to the next, my purpose may become greater than anything I imagined. In his service my value doesn’t decrease. The Lord has been impressing upon me to keep my hands open. He needs to take away what I’ve been holding tightly before he can put something else there. It is only when I let go of one thing that I will be free to embrace the next.

There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord. (1 Corinthians 12:5 NLT)

Like Eggs in a Basket

#Jesus, #inspiration, valueMy friend raises chickens and told me about the variety of eggs she gathers. When I heard they come in all sizes and colours I thought of the medium and large eggs for sale in the grocery stores. I’ve also seen both brown and white shells, so this was what I pictured.

Imperfect eggs, with bumps on them are rarely seen in stores but I have encountered some of these so thought I understood her statement.

Then I heard about shells that were pale yellow, a muddied green and brilliant blue. I knew other birds produced coloured eggs like this, but hadn’t realized chickens also did. It all depends on the breed or genetics of the hen.

“They may look different on the outside, but inside they’re all the same,” she said. Immediately my mind shifted. “Just like us,” I replied.

Our outward appearance doesn’t matter to Jesus. He sees past that, deep into our souls. When it comes to what’s inside, we all have hopes and dreams for peace, love, family and a sense of purpose. Each has joys and sorrows. Unless I take the time to get to know someone who appears different, I will never know how similar we may be.

We are all like eggs in a basket and Jesus sees the value in each of us. When I find it difficult to love those who are not like me I need only ask Jesus to teach me. He will be happy to help me live the second great commandment.

The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Mark 12:31 NLT)

Inventory

inventory photoI work in a lovely little gift store. It has a wide variety of items for almost any occasion which makes it a favorite place to shop in our area. We have just finished taking our year end inventory. Everything in the store had to be counted and its value recorded. This was a time consuming, labor intensive task in a store filled with so many treasures.

As the items were counted and recorded, I started thinking about taking inventory in my own life. Imagine taking the time to sort through everything tucked away in my conscious and subconscious mind. There are so many memories and experiences to think about. Just as was discovered in the store inventory, there are probably things that are no longer useful and those that had been buried under something else and forgotten over time. There are also others that are more plentiful than I first realized. In my personal inventory, anything negative needs to be discarded. Old hurts and anger have no place in my life now. What I choose to focus on is the abundance of blessings that I have experienced over the course of my life. There are wonderful memories of love and laughter with friends and family. Times I have been able to bring a smile or encouraging words to someone have added meaning and purpose to my life. Yes, when I take my inventory I see that what holds the greatest value for me are not the things that I have but the people that God has put in my life. I am so thankful to count my blessings.

Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! Through Christ, God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing that heaven has to offer. Ephesians 1:3 God’s Word

Be devoted to each other like a loving family. Excel in showing respect for each other. Don’t be lazy in showing your devotion. Use your energy to serve the Lord. Be happy in confidence, be patient in trouble, and pray continually. Romans 12:10-12 God’s Word

Be Inspired this week.