Friday, February 04, 2011

That Audience of One

"But David encouraged himself in the Lord..." 1 Samuel 30:6


Yesterday, just for fun and encouragement, I totaled (as best I could) the money I have saved and earned since Tom lost his job. I've kept records so to assure myself that I'm, uh, not just spinning my wheels, traveling nowhere, wasting time.

So I flipped through my notebook where I scribble totals from online survey checks, grocery refunds and credit card rewards. Also, I went through my supermarket and Rite-Aid receipts, totaling my savings from sales and coupons then added the values from free stuff I've received in the mail, even estimating the coin totals I gathered from around the house which we'll use for yard sales. Etc.

Totaling all that, I arrived at around $670. Dollars saved and dollars earned.

Of course, that's not counting the many elusive, too-much-strain-for-my-brain savings from cooking meals from scratch, cutting my own hair, keeping the heat down low and lights switched off, staying out of stores so to avoid temptation, shopping yard sales for used goods rather than new, not ordering books from and--well, you know.

That stuff adds up quickly, but rather than try putting a dollar number to those savings, I just let myself feel good about them.

Of course, people with real jobs make tons more money but, as I see it, real encouragement doesn't make those kinds of comparisons. Real encouragement recognizes a job well done--and how it can be improved upon later. (See my last post.)

Sometimes you just need to encourage yourself rather than waiting for others to do it. Or maybe most of the time, I don't know. But what I do know is that, if we listen, God will tell us we're doing a good job. He'll tell us He appreciates our obedience and that, always, He's standing right beside us to lighten the load and help us do/be/listen even better next time.

And that He loves us even when we--by recklessness or laziness--veer off the road. Even then He's there to help drag us back up and fix what our inattention broke.

So today I would say if no one else is encouraging you, well, just encourage yourself. Let God be your audience of one, allow Him to be the reason you do what you do. And let His applause be all that you seek.


"... and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour." . 1 Corinthians 3:8


Unknown said...

You are an encouragement to me girl

Anonymous said...

Good going! You are right, it does add up. We can save a lot of money by doing the things you are doing.

I admire how you don't whine and complain like many people do, when obstacles are put in the way. You just dig in and do what is necessary.

Thickethouse.wordpress said...

Give yourself a good pat on the back from me, Debra! You're doing a great job and encouraging others, too. You are always so positive! I am sure we are meant to see the good with a grateful heart and do the good we can!

Ann said...

Thanks Debra. You are an encouragement to me also. Thank you for that last paragraph. sometimes I get so caught up in needing the bosses approval or the kids or the mother in laws that I forget I always have God's. I'm going to write it in my journal for future reference.

Donetta said...

every penny counts even the ones you might just find under foot. It is a show of respect for all that God entrusts us with.

Elizabeth said...

That is great Debra!

Andrea@Clipping Makes Cents said...

Great job, Debra. God always provides, and is honored with our praise to Him for it.

Thanks for putting my blog on your blog roll! I came across your blog on my site traffic tracker, and I've stopped by a few times. Your post are very uplifting...keep it up. Take care! :)


Debra said...

A special thanks to each of you--your compliments are some of the nicest ones I've *ever* received! I do so appreciate your taking the time to write and encourage me.

And Andrea--thanks for being a new reader of my blog! I so appreciate all the work you do to keep us updated on the many new coupons out there. You've been a huge help!

Thanks again, Everyone!...Debra