Happy November friends! Wow. Can you believe it is almost Christmas time? Definitely my favorite time of year! Over these past couple of weeks I have been enjoying everything pumpkin…pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin bread, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin butter, and even pumpkin ice cream! I can’t get enough! Haha.
This morning as I sit here on my couch with my cup of coffee in hand, I begin to reflect back on October. It was a month full of so much excitement and new beginnings but also one of the most challenging. I turned 25, spoke at two incredible conferences, planned dinner parties for Empty Buckets, planned our first well project in Africa, and so much more. I was challenged to hold onto my faith and God’s promises regardless of what my circumstances said. And as we all know, this can be one of the hardest things to do. But it is in the moments that we STAND in faith that God creates His greatest work within us. So no matter what kind of month October was for you, grow from those challenging moments and allow God to produce His very BEST in you.
Well, it’s almost November and you know what that means! It is a new month and a brand new fresh start! I don’t know about you, but I need it. This month I want to dig deep into what it really means to be fully content and satisfied in Jesus living a life of generosity. I’m calling this month “No Spend November.” I want to take what I would normally spend on myself and give it away. I want to learn to “live simply so that others may simply live” and to be content in little and in plenty. Paul says it so well in Philippians 4:11-13 “Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty with plenty or little, for I can do everything with Christ who gives me strength.” Paul saw life from God’s point of view. He let his focus be on his purpose rather than on what he thought he should “have.” He had his priorities straight and was so grateful for all that God had given him. He pulled himself away from the nonessentials of life and focused on what really mattered.
The goal/challenge for this month is to fast from spending; shopping, Starbucks, unnecessary moments of eating out, manicures/pedicures (things I love to do with my girls). I want to take the money I would normally budget on these activities and give it away in different ways. 1 Timothy 6:17-19 tells us to be RICH in good deeds, always ready to help others, and to trust only in God who gives us all that we need. There is so much power to these words that challenge me to take the eyes off of myself and to be about the needs of others; to sacrifice what I “want” for those who have little. This month I really want to take the time to look at my life and truly be thankful. It is so easy to get caught up in the world of feeling like we need more “stuff” or letting this season be about what do I “want,” when, if we would really take the time to stop and look at our lives, we don’t really don’t need anything at all because God has given us much. We have absolutely all we need.
A different take on this challenge is to “spend” your time and effort and love on others. Maybe this month is a month that you need to tear down some idols in your life. Where do you spend you time? Money? Effort? There are different things constantly in our hearts that the world is screaming for and it is a battle of your mind to seek out what truly matters most. Take the moments that you would normally spend on yourselves and invest that time and effort in others. I know, for myself, time can get away from me and before I realize it, I have spent it all on myself. I really want to be intentional with my time this month, spending it with others who may just need someone to listen. I want to listen well. And most of all, LOVE God and LOVE people.
Who wants to take this challenge with me of #NoSpendNovember?? I would love to hear your stories and how God uses this month to create a life of generosity in you!!
-Clean out my closet and give clothes away. SIMPLIFY! SIMPLIFY! SIMPLIFY!
-Make dinner for a friend
-Bake cookies for my neighbors and take time to just sit and talk with them.
-Buy a tank of gas for someone at a gas station.
-Give money to a family so they can have Christmas this year.
-Write down three things in my journal everyday that I am thankful for.
-Read ‘gods at war‘, defeating the idols that battle for your heart.
-Be intentional about never forgetting to say “I love you” to those in my life that mean the most.
-Fast from spending any money on myself
-Daily living out Isaiah 58:7
-And to never forget how blessed I truly am.
Alright friends, here is to #NoSpendNovember !!
“Not that I was ever in need , for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little, for I can do everything with Christ who gives me strength.” – Phil 4:11-13