Random Acts of "Kindness"

BREAKTHROUGH

Ordinary Sunday — attending church with our daughter’s family, I stopped in the bathroom before services began. I listened to a woman as she wrestled with her makeup. She wasn’t happy with the way the makeup looked or how it was going on. She was rather verbal about it. So much so, that I counseled her to stop being so hard on herself. Her doctor had threatened her with insulin, she wanted to lose weight instead. And I remembered how my husband is often telling me to stop being so hard on myself. Stop being so negative. The words flow so easily out of my mouth.

I asked her how old she was. She didn’t want to tell me but finally did. I mentioned that she was twenty years younger than myself. She didn’t believe me — she looked at my neck, and said I had a young neck. I thought my neck looked like a turkey wattle.

As a matter of fact, I’m beating myself up with a wet noodle this morning. Figuratively, not actually. My weight WAS DOWN two pounds. I WAS so happy, but not today. In fact, my weight is UP three pounds and it is all my fault. Saturday I made a new recipe for pickles and used one tablespoon of salt to relieve the cucumbers of their liquid. I thought the salt would wash off when I washed the cucumbers before adding the brining liquid. Oops! I should have cut the salt. TOO LATE NOW! I could toss the remaining pickles but I have a feeling that I will continue to enjoy them and deal with the extra weight.

More than seven years ago my daughter gave me a mandolin when she was working for Pampered Chef. It rested in my cabinet until Saturday. I often thought of using it but never did. I always took out a knife and sliced whatever needed to be cut. Over the years I’ve watched demonstrators use it and remembered the one sitting at home. The cucumbers needed to be cut thinly, I needed the mandolin. IT WAS EASY and I was careful and didn’t cut myself.

The minister asked a good question: “What does it take to see real, lasting and effective change in our lives?” I remembered many years ago when I was at the camper, taking a walk, trying to find words to put on cards I was giving to participants in Christ Renews His Church weekend my group was hosting the next week. These words came to me during the walk: “Lord, as long as you are with me, I’m not alone.” I used those words for the cards I was making for the group of women we hosted. My husband used the words to make a card for me. And remembering the gift of those words was a great breakthrough in my life.

It is time for another breakthrough. Real — effective — lasting change? I need to stop being so hard on myself. I need to stop the negative talk — easier said than done.

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