Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A Spirit of Courage

I've read the stories: the murderous, baby-stealing Freecycler and the Craigslist killer. My mom is always the first to warn me. And then there was my Uncle who was terrified when I found free cardboard moving boxes for his daughter. I'm not reckless, and I'm not stupid enough to believe that all mankind has a genuinely benevolent spirit. Yes, I take precautions like always taking someone with me for a pickup. But, I still continue to utilize both groups.

I think God expects me to accept that evil is merely a part of the fallen world in which I live; yet, to live with a spirit of courage that He is in control. If I lived each moment in fear of the potential for evil in each person I met, I would live defeated . The battle against the world's evil would be lost without my sword even being unsheathed. I am called to live in the world yet not be of the world, and that means trusting that no one can harm me without God's approval...and praying that God will give me a sense of discernment any time something is amiss.

What I fail to understand is why the newspapers never report how eco-friendly these groups are or how fabulously generous many of these beautiful people are. There will always be evil people, but I know from several years of Freecycling and Craigslisting that most people who are giving something away or are selling something online have a desire to see the item used versus tossed; have good, generous hearts; want to make a little money from a dust collector; or just want to rid themselves of the clutter!

The fruit of others' generosity has blessed me a hundred fold, especially in the past 2 1/2 years I've been seeking to provide clothes, furniture, toys, and food on a thrifty budget for my 3 little munchkins. I can never give back enough to feel like I've balanced the scales.

Last week, I was blessed yet again with a caterpillar swing--as you can see, I can keep both twins happy simultaneously!! They love it, and so does Wyatt because he wants to push (less than gently). I was so thrilled because I wasn't about to pay the $70 + $30 shipping that Ebay wanted.

So, when I happen to catch another negative news feed that relates story after story of all the evil that surrounds me, all I have to do is look in a different direction to see the kindness and generosity that still lives in individuals' hearts.

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