Saturday, February 16, 2008

I Am Rich... in Friends and Family!

Tonight, I went to "Leland Klassen's Comedy Tournament" at our church. Okay, first of all, what a gift to get out on a Saturday night! The girls are visiting their grandparents this weekend, and Marty worked day shifts this weekend and got home early enough tonight so I could go. It was great to get out, see friends and laugh. But I was also completely shocked when a friend paid for the ticket... what a wonderful surprise! Earlier today, another friend treated me to coffee... well, in my case, cranberry juice and a chocolate chip cookie! Another friend surprised me with some scrapbooking supplies and chocolates last week. When I had my birthday breakfast last year, I could not believe how spoiled I was with goodies... but all these surprises lately have been for no particular reason.

Let me tell you, God has brought me a LONG way to be able to accept this amazing love. For so many years I was consumed with self-hatred... I thought I didn't deserve anything good... and that if people really knew me, they would hate me too. I was terrified to let anyone get close to me, sure that they would hurt me and that I would deserve it. Even after God brought me out of the pit of self-hatred and self-destruction, I still didn't feel "worthy" of love. Yes, I'm okay I realized, but I don't deserve to be treated REALLY well. I loved to lavish love and presents on other people, but couldn't accept it for myself. Now, my initial reaction is, "Why are you being so wonderful to me?" And I catch myself starting to think, "I don't deserve it..." But then I think, that's how God loves us. We don't usually "deserve" it... so often we treat Him like crap or entirely ignore Him, but He still loves us unconditionally, lavishly, always showing us, trying to woo us to Himself...

I may never be a millionaire but I am SO rich in the people who love me and who I love, and in God's amazing love and grace. How can I be anything but eternally grateful? So thank You, God, for You, and for all the wonderful people You've brought into my life, and thank you to all my family and friends... I love you!

5 comments:

Krickit said...

Janis you are a wonderful friend... you've brought many blessings into my life, and I thank you for that. You are always thoughtfull, always caring, and always giving of yourself! I've never known anyone like you! You constantly inpire me, and encourage me to be a better person by your remarkable example, and I love that about you! You are amazing and more than worthy of being loved, admired, looked up to, and one of the most wonderful friends I've ever had! Don't ever let anyone ever tell you different... even that dark voice in the back of your head... when he speaks up telling you you don't deserve to be loved... you tell him to shut up for me, ok?! tell him he's an a$$!

Love you dear friend!

Monkey said...

I have not known you for as long as Krista, I think it has been about 4 or 5 months. In that short amount of time I have seen a rare kindness and care of others. You made me feel like a life long friend of yours right away. I know of a few people that you have helped along the way and they are all thankfull for what you have done for them.

Family Of Five said...

It's always much easier to believe the bad than the good things people tell you! You deserve to be loved and spoiled. You are an amazing, giving, trusing person.... people are good to you because.... YOU DESERVE IT! Being rich in love is the best kind of rich! I wouldn't trade the love and family I have in my life for all the money in the world! Keep being you.... we all like you this way! :)

Janis said...

See... people like you are why I'm so blessed and rich!

HomeSchooler said...

Janis, I have known you FOREVER!!! And even though I know how you've felt about yourself, for some reason I can still be surprised by it. Both because I've KNOWN you, and because I've known YOU - ALL of you - the good, bad, and ugly. And even through the worst of times, you have always been my best friend. I know you're imperfect, heck, I could detail your imperfections (just as you could mine, but we won't go there now) and yet even when Satan has whispered the most evil things into your mind, you have always responded to others with that phenominal outpouring of love, though you didn't think you deserved it yourself. I know, I know, you didn't always THINK the most phenominally loving thoughts, but you consistantly denied giving into those thoughts (well, except that little incident over the scissors - but hey, we're living in a democracy, and you can use lefties if you want to!!!). But you know what the really, really, REALLY amazing part is??? We DON'T deserve it!!! Not you, not me, not anyone!!! We don't deserve God's love, but He gives it to us anyways, pouring it out in a merciful, cleansing flood that will never end! And somehow, in the merciful, cleansing flood of love that He's been pouring out on you since childhood, He has given you the incrdible gift of loving others in the same, whole-hearted way. I am so eternally grateful for you, and I am so grateful to God for bringing you into my life. Now if I could just convince Him that I need you a little closer, because there's some movies we have to watch together...