Monday, January 2, 2012

The Givers and the Takers

I recently had something happen to me that highlighted the fact that there are givers and there are takers in this life.

Just before Christmas, on Wednesday night, I locked up the house and left for church. My son had been sitting on my bed with my laptop watching his endless basketball replays on YouTube and my other son shut down the Wii to head off to youth group. It was a typical Christmas break afternoon. My younger son was having a friend to stay the night, so an hour and fifteen minutes later we all trooped back into the house visiting with the father of the other boy and everyone headed off to settle into their favorite activities.

First came the request, "Mom, where's your laptop?"

I looked at him. "It's back on my bed where you left it."

He frowned. "I don't see it. I'll go look again."

At this point I'm still clueless as I continue to visit with our guests' father. But he left only a moment later and since my son still couldn't find the laptop I got up to go show him where he'd left it.

Not so much.

We'd been robbed. It was only a moment later that we realized the Wii and a few other small things were missing including one Christmas present - more on that later.

After calling the police and giving them a report we all felt a little numb. There were no signs of forced entry. So we surmise that my oldest son's key that he lost a few months back wasn't really lost, but taken by one of his friends who sadly has fallen into drugs and been in and out of Juvey several times already in his 15 years. Just a guess and nothing has been recovered, however something else happened after this and that is what I want the focus of this post to be.

The word got out, of course, and a friend of mine put out a request for donations on Facebook. It was quite humbling a few days later when they brought by the donations they'd collected, and told us that someone had offered to buy us a new laptop, as well. Over the next few days donations continued to come in and our family was simply blown away by the contrast of the two actions.

On the one hand you have someone who goes into another person's home to take what is not theirs. And on the other hand, you have those who have not been wronged in any way but who are willing to take on part of the burden anyway.

I don't know about you, but I want to fall into the latter group.

And I got to thinking about this - how it should apply to my writing career. We all know that as writers we have to self-promote. And sometimes that involves recruiting the assistance of others. But let us be careful to remember to be givers first, and then the help we need will come.

There are a lot of other writers out there whose books I really do enjoy. So this year, I plan to be a giver - I'm committing myself to helping others along this writing journey - whether with promotion, or information, or advice.

Interestingly enough, the one Christmas present that was stolen, ended up being a Bible. And whoever broke into our house now has our whole church praying for them (and I hope you, now too.) So more good than has already happened may come from this, yet. And I'm reminded of a verse - Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

He certainly has for me this year. And I know I can move ahead into this new year, with my future completely assured.

Happy New Year, everyone.
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  1. I love love love this! I'm happy the Lord blessed your family.

    I remember once after our woman's bible study I went for coffee with my MIL. She left the top up on her car and I asked, "What if someone takes our stuff?" She replied, "There's only our bible's and study notes. If they steal my bible, obviously they need it more." I pray he/she reads it.

  2. So true, Stephanie. :) I'm praying they read it and come to repentance. And God truly does bless us, all the time.

  3. Don't you love how God makes all things work for good? I'm still very sorry you and your family had to deal with this, but I'm so happy to know that so much good has already come of it. You (and the thief) continue in my prayers.

  4. Thank you, Katie! Blessings on your New Year!

  5. I wish every thief would take a Bible--and read it, because they can't steal what is freely given.
    I'm so sorry you and your family went through this experience.
    Drugs are such powerful tools the enemy is using right now. We know several families affected by the problem that we are now approved through the court system to watch these kids for babysitting and overnights. Three different families in just my immediate circle of friends, neighborhood, & church family.
    Praying for you and yours and the thief.

  6. Lynnette, I hate that this happened to you and your family, but how wonderful everything turned out! I agree about being a giver this year and helping other writers along. That's a worthy goal.

  7. Lisa, how wonderful that you are helping these families with babysitting. Hopefully you can be a wonderful influence on these kids!

    CBM, You're welcome. Thanks for stopping by.

    Linda, It's not something fun to go through, but I just love how God can turn such a terrible thing into blessing. BTW, I saw that your book made Karen Baney's list as her number 1 favorite western book for 2011! Congrats!