January Reflections

Have I only begun this experiment 4 weeks ago? I established this project in order to find deeper compassion for those less fortunate. Even after this short time, my heart endures contortions in every direction to get there. I sense my mind opening with every new encounter; each bringing hours of self discovery. 
At first, I believed I would gain more understanding if I became directly involved with those I chose to help. I reversed that belief following my last experience, requiring personal conversations with those living on the street. I’ve discovered I need to balance the face to face encounters with activities involving less intimacy. That may change, but for now, my soul can only take so much desperation. 
My end goal is to rid, or severely diminish, my selfishness. I created the requirement to blog each volunteer event in order to keep myself on track throughout the year. Now that I’ve started, I suspect the journaling about each venture will promote the change in me more than the actual “doing”. 

“…for the Lord searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts.” 1 Chronicles 28:9b

Reflecting on my inner thoughts, I may be getting a glimpse of what the Lord has seen in my heart all of my 41 years. It’s not always pretty. 
Did I get your attention? Here’s the deal.
I want to thank everyone who is supporting me through this crazy undertaking. I so appreciate personal emails from friends sharing their encouragement. In fact, the blog stats show almost 600 views in the last month! (580 at this writing, to be exact.) Either I’m reaching others curious about this journey, or my parents have been clicking “refresh” hundreds of times. I’m choosing to believe the former.
They say “comments” make the blogosphere world go ‘round. Some blogs offer contests and give aways to attract readers. Unless anyone wants to win a night at a warming shelter, I didn’t think free gifts would be conducive to this site. 
However, I feel great about donating items! Therefore, for each comment that is made on posts in February, I will donate one diaper to Northwest Children’s Outreach.
I look forward to hearing from you, whether you comment about your own volunteer experiences or if you just want to say, “hi!” Even constructive criticism is welcome. Just don’t write nasty comments. I’ll still donate the diaper, but my feelings will be hurt. 
Baby supplies at NW Children’s Outreach
This is the Bible verse I’m pondering right now. Let me know if it also speaks to you.

If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.1 John 3:17-18


  1. says

    Let me start you off right! I am loving your blog, your heart and your willingness to not only get out there and serve, but to do the hard work of learning about yourself in the process. I am HONORED to have you at Kaleo and to call you my friend!

  2. Troy Hoppenrath says

    Hey Andee,
    Just got caught up on all your blog entries! Thanks for sharing your experiences, your heart and your growing compassion for others. I ran across a quote that speaks to your personal commitment of compassion to serve.

    “The whole idea of compassion is based on a keen awareness of the interdependence of all these living beings, which are all part of one another, and all involved in one another.” – Thomas Merton (famous dead guy)

    I just got back from from the Covenant's Pastors meeting in Chicago and the theme of the conference was "We're in it together!" Sorta cheesy I thought. But your blog got me thinking. What if we all believed that and lived that? Living out the Gospel one encounter, one relationship, one act of service, one act of compassion, listening and hearing each others stories. In doing so we find the heart of God and others do as well. Thanks for letting us take this journey with you.

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