Monday, March 8, 2010

Bear One Another's Burden's

As I sit here tonight, I am amazed at God's love, and saddened by the loss I have seen today. As I looked at face book this morning, I read about a friend who's mother went to be with the Lord today. Then as I continued to read, another friend's grandmother died today, also, a loving Christian woman and friend of my mother's, was killed today. Then tonight I went to a viewing for a friend who just lost her husband to cancer. YET.... the AMAZING thing was.... through all of their sadness, they each had hope. They each knew that their loved ones were now in the arms of JESUS! They also, each had many friends praying for them, embracing them and sharing their burdens.
Sometimes in life we need that extra help! We think we have to do it all alone... We think that we have to be perfect.... We think... "No one else struggles the way I do." These statements are just not true.
This might be a pretty sad way to get into this blog, but as I was sitting here, trying to figure out what to blog today, I couldn't help but think of all of these friends. They are hurting, but God will use this pain for HIS glory.
In our attempt to be the "perfect" Christian woman, wife, and mother, we think we should have the perfect house, children, and meals. Let's face it! We are not all gifted in every area. SO!
My solution is BARTER! Share one another's burdens!

When I lived in Phoenix, I dreamed of having a housekeeper come in and clean my house. The finances, just didn't allow that to happen, so me and a friend of mine named Jennifer decided that we would help each other out and barter. Each week we would switch houses. One week we would come to my house and clean (3 hour time limit, and while our husbands were not at home), and the next we would go to hers. We had a great time, we uncovered lots of cob webs, and we bonded like never before. Our houses looked great, and best of all, it was FREE! The next year, a 3rd girl joined in the rotation, and we even began, organizing for each other and cleaning out closets, cabinets, and de-cluttering our houses. It was great!
Since that time, I have done this with a few other friends. I have bartered organizing together with a good friend, and traded skills with friends. There are many creative things that you can barter to save money. I will list some below. The key when doing this though, is set time limits and expectations clearly before getting started, so that no one feels taken advantage of. Also, try to do this when your spouse is away from the house, and don't be embarrassed to let someone see, where you might need help, or have a dirty closet.


swap trades
(example: painting, cooking, sewing, etc... we all have different talents,
so the ideas are endless!)
babysitting (trade babysitting with a friend... get your errands run, child free,
or go on a date with your spouse.)
organizing (choose a project that you need help with and trade with a friend.
Your house this week, theirs next week.)
Cleaning (don't be embarrassed! Have fun!)
Trade household items. (once I painted for someone, and they gave me a computer, also, I have traded pieces of furniture with friends before. We both wanted something different)
Grocery Shopping ( I have done this with a friend in two ways. Sometimes, I would go to her house, watch all the children while she shopped, they she would watch them, while I shopped. The children got a "play day" and we got to the store quickly. Other times, one of us would watch the children, and the other, would do the shopping.)

These are just a few ideas. We are ALL so different, and we all have different talents to share.
Be creative. Have fun! Get to know your friends better, and share one another's burdens!
We were not meant to do it all alone.

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