Bible Verse

Beg as loud as you can for good common sense. Proverbs 2:3

Friday, November 21, 2014

Carol’s Exceptionally Valuable Tips for Doing Good Deeds Anonymously

It’s coming up to Thanksgiving and Christmas, which means lots of good cheer, and when even usually grumpy people will smile occasionally.  Since there is so much good cheer, some folks will want to give stuff anonymously. 

Before we get into anything else, let’s review what the word “anonymous” means:  Doing a good deed in such a manner that your identity will be forever lost to humankind.  God will know, but He’s supposed to.

1. Because of the anonymous part, be sure all tags, boxes, receipts or mailing labels have been removed before doing the actual deed.  One time I mailed my secret pal a card with my return address label on it. Kind of defeats the purpose of “secret” in “secret pal.” 

2.  Wear a disguise if there is any chance someone will see you hauling 15 Christmas hams to your car at the mall.  A scarf tied around your head and sunglasses for the ladies and an Indiana Jones hat (sorry, no whip) and a penciled-on mustache for the guys.

Then you won’t hear some kid hollering from three rows over in the parking lot, “Hey, Mom!  There’s Mrs. Green.  Hi, Mrs. Green!  What are you doing here, Mrs. Green?”  And then, of course, Mrs. Holleringkid will come over to you as you frantically throw the hams into the back of your car.  “Hi!,” she says.  “Wow!  Look at all those hams!  What in the world are you going to do with that much ham?”  Knowing the Holleringkid family will be the recipient of a food box with a ham in it, you start babbling on about being from a large family of large eaters, blah, blah, blah.  Finally, Mrs. Holleringkid gives you a funny look and walks away with a crooked smile, her hand firmly in her child’s.  Ah, children…

3.  Be ready to duck and run at any moment.  Casually moseying down the driveway won’t cut it if you’re anonymously delivering a package to the front porch.  Always have your escape route in mind as you move around the yard and up to the house. And always pray they don’t have a big old dog that will at least act like he’s going to eat you alive, even if he doesn’t.  You don’t want to sprain anything right before Christmas.

4.  If you’re not in charge of doing the actual deed, you may be called upon to distract the folks who are getting anonymously deeded upon.  Think about this ahead of time so you’ll have an appropriate distraction.  Like, “Look up into the sky!  Is it a bird?  Is it a plane? Is it Santa on a plane that looks like a bird?”  You can always bring out the old “Is that a UFO up there?”  Or the more modern “Is that a zombie over in the woods?”  Or a vampire, superhero, teenage mutant ninja turtle, or any character from Frozen.

5. Of course, an alibi will be needed if you are accused of doing a good deed for Christmas.  This is especially true if you’re not known for your good deeds the rest of the year.  It will have to be kind of vague because you don’t want to lie to them.  Something along the lines of “I was probably watching Keeping Up With the Kardashians or Here Comes Honey Boo Boo that night. Or it might have been The Real Housewives of Orange County.” Well, maybe you could tell just a little lie and pretend you were watching a documentary on PBS.

6.  If you’re delivering something edible to a front porch, make sure you package it in airtight containers before a dog, cat, raccoon or deer tears it to pieces and eats the contents, the box and the bow.  Don’t assume these critters wouldn’t eat Aunt Sadie’s famous fudge.  In fact, don’t assume you can put anything on that porch that wouldn’t be tasty to any creature sniffing around for just such wonderful treats. You don’t want the household fighting with a hissing possum over what’s left of the box.

Giving anonymously is one of life’s greatest joys.  And it’s Biblical: 

But when you give to charity, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,  so that your deeds of charity may be in secret; and your Father Who sees in secret will reward you openly.
                                         Matthew 6:3-4 (AMP)

Can’t argue with that…

Beg as loud as you can for good common sense.
Proverbs 2:3

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Calling All C. S. Lewis Fans!

C. S. Lewis and the Crisis of a Christian

 by Gregory S. Cootsona

In this well-researched examination of C. S. Lewis’ books, letters and other personal papers, Gregory S. Cootsona covers eight crises Lewis faced throughout his lifetime and how he dealt with them. 

The reader is taken into Lewis’ life, beginning with his crisis of atheism.  His approach to this crisis, separated into three different categories, is how he approached most anything.  He was a very deep thinker and brilliant scholar who would work very hard on each crisis until he had worked it out to his satisfaction.

Other crises examined include the Crisis of the Bible, the Crisis of Feeling, and the Crisis of Death.  Cootsona’s deep research tells not only how Lewis reacted, but also tells us how others reacted to Lewis.  Even though C. S. Lewis became the best known apologist of the twentieth century and was used by God to help out the rest of us, many at the time looked at him as a fundamentalist or evangelist.  Such things were not necessarily received well at Magdalen College or Oxford where he worked as a professor.

The author also includes personal stories of how he faced many of the same crises in his own life and how Lewis’ writings helped him through them.  His point is that C. S. Lewis is still speaking to us, translating God’s word for us here in the twenty-first century, 50 years after his death.

I was fascinated by this book, impressed with the author’s knowledge, and his willingness to offer his own story.  I liked the way he categorized and then explained each crisis.  There is a lot of hope in this book, which I’m sure Lewis would appreciate.

The publisher provided me with a complimentary copy of
this book in return for my fair and honest review.