This life that God has both blessed and entrusted us with is not meant to be spent selfishly only wanting for our own gain and benefit. We are on this earth to be of service to both man and God. When we realize this truth that it is better to give than it is to gain, that it is better to esteem others even over ourselves and to treat others as we would want to be treated, that is when our life will go from ordinary to extraordinary. The extraordinary life is one that wishes to rise above any pettiness, to look past the offenses of others, to see the best in one another and to love as God loves without motive or pretense. I know many people who live their life selfishly; not caring about the plight of others, not taking an interest in trying to help or encourage another because their sole focus is on what they can gain so that their life can become better. When I look from a distance at how they are leading their life, I become sad for them because I know of the many blessings that they are letting pass them by because they are not following the command of the Lord Jesus who said to love your neighbor as you love yourself. (Luke 6:31) (Matthew 22:37-40)
That is why I have made it a habit to be introspective over my life dissecting my actions, my thoughts and my words trying to always see if I am doing the right things that can help someone else rise higher, stand taller and become all that God has created them to be. If any of us can have even the smallest part of being a blessing to our fellow man we should rejoice and with humble hearts be thankful that God found us worthy enough to be used to help one of His children stand up again. That is why I focus many of my messages on being a blessing when we have the opportunity because that is what life is all about. It is about elevating our fellow man, loving them with the love of the Lord and caring for them as Jesus cared for all who came to Him in need. We read in 1 John 3:16-18 “By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoever has this worlds goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.” (Romans 12:9-11) (Galatians 6:7-10)
Be encouraged to make yourself available to share a kind word, do a kind deed and simply be there when someone is in need around you. You can make your life extraordinary by simply taking an interest in helping another as you would want to be helped just the same.
I hope this message inspires and encourages your heart to let your light shine brightly every single time you encounter someone in need of being lifted up.
There is an old Cherokee expression that goes, “When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced. Live your life so that when you die, the world cries and you rejoice.” Well, I know one Italian lady who lived up to that Cherokee saying. My grandmother or Nana came into this world in Italy right after the turn of the 20th century. In 1914 when she was only 8 years old her family braved German U-boat attacks to travel to America. There she grew up, married, and lovingly raised four sons. Then she helped to raise me and my brothers as well.
I can still remember coming home after school to my Nanny’s old house. The dinners always smelled so wonderful. She always gave me a big Italian hug before dinner too with a smile on the side and a kiss for dessert. In the summers she would take her cooking skills across the road to work at the local 4-H camp. The campers would always give her and the other cooks a standing ovation at the last meal. I would sometimes sneak into the kitchen at work to grab a roll and a quick hug before going off to play. Nanny would always slip me a quarter to buy a pop as well.
Nanny also had her tougher side. She had a temper. She could yell with the best of them. When people stole the dandelion wine she had sitting in the sun one day she taught us all a few Italian words and phrases that we hadn’t heard. Still, she always led with her heart and shared her love freely with family, friends, and strangers alike. She lived to be over 90 years old but died way too soon. We all cried when she died, but I know that Heaven rejoiced at getting her back. A part of her, though, is still living here in the hearts and minds of those she left behind.
My Nanny had a wonderful life here. She lived. She loved. She laughed. She cooked, cared, and cried. She touched a lot of hearts. She made her grandson smile and she made God smile as well. May we all do the same. May we all live glorious lives of love worth rejoicing.
By Joseph J. Mazzella
Read and meditate on these scriptures:
Psalm 34:11-15 “Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the LORD. What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteous, and His ears are open unto their cry.”
Romans 12:10-16 “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Be of the same mind one toward another...”
Galatians 6:9-10 “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.”
Matthew 5:8-12 Jesus says “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.”
Romans 12:14-17 “Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.”
All of these scriptures can be found in the King James Version Bible.
Today’s Selected Poem: THE CHOICES WE MAKE
Click here to read --- http://www.Godswork.org/inpoem139.htm
Today’s Selected Testimony: A BETTER WAY
Click here to read --- http://www.Godswork.org/testimony22.htm
In Christ’s Service,
God’s Work Ministry