What is in your Hand?

Meet my Guest:

My friend, Fiona, is my New Zealand friend who lives in my home town. It's a long story how we connected, but she's an amazing girl who loves her husband, 2 adorable boys, and God. She shares her meaningful thoughts over at A Little Bit of Honesty, and did I tell you she loves to bake? Yes, she loves to bake! I know, because we've been a recipient of her hospitality!

  I am thrilled and honored to be posting here today!  I am blessed to call Sandy my friend – she is an inspiration to me and I'll be forever grateful that she has opened her heart and her kitchen to me.

  I love people.  Some would call me nosey, others would say I am inquisitive.  I believe everyone has a story and I itch to know your story.  I also love food.  I love to shop for it,  the process of cooking it but most of all I love to eat it!  Food + People = Hospitality.  

  In my mind hospitality is the art of making people feel loved and valued – by investing in them with great conversation and great food.  Rick Warren says that 'Entertaining declares, This is mine – these rooms, these adornments.  Look, please and admire.  Hospitality whispers, What's mine is yours'.  (Acts 2: 44).  

  When I was growing up my Mum (oops I mean my Mom!) wasn't a great cook...thankfully I didn't know any different (I do now!)....but what she and my Dad were great at was the habit of opening up their home very regularly for potluck lunches for their different circles of friends.  I saw first hand what it was to share what they had.  

   Now I am in the process of finetuning that whole concept myself.  The concept of sharing what is in my hand.  Using what is in my hand to make something for someone else.  To be aware of another's need and to do something about it.  

  For me, my time is my biggest asset.  I am a stay at home Mom, with financial resources that are limited – but time and time again, after getting what I call a God 'nudging', I find I have exactly what I need, to fulfil a need in someone else's life, or to simply bless them and encourage them.

  It doesn't take much to whip up a cake or a batch of muffins, but it speaks volumes to the recipient of the goodies.  

  I've been on the receiving end of 'baked blessings' – I'll never forget the time when I had only just been diagnosed with coeliac disease and a friend painstakingly  made a cake for me with only 'safe' ingredients.  It really touched my heart.  So I know just how amazing it can make you feel to know that someone has thought about you, and put their time and effort into making something specifically for you.

  I am very good friends with my Doctor in New Zealand.  Over time I also became friends with the receptionists, the other doctors, and the cleaners at the medical centre that my Doctor works at because of some batches of cupcakes and muffins. As a result of a God nudging the medical centre became my semi-regular targetted baked blessings drop off point. I never had to wait for appointments that's for sure!  I never had issues getting seen at any time of the day!  

   No seriously – it was more than that.  All the staff at the medical centre are Christians and do a fantastic outreach into the community I lived in.  As a Christian I believe I should honor and bless those who are in Christian ministry.  'Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples' John 13:35.  I love to bake – by baking for those around me who are like-minded Christians I am loving them.....the best thing we can do for our communities for Christ is to love one another.  The giving of cupcakes is a great indication of love – especially black forest with cream cheese frosting.....and they were made from things I already had, what I had in my hand.
  You never know what your simple act will mean to someone else – you never know how it will impact them and touch their hearts by filling their tummies!  

  So, I'm on this journey to carry on finetuning myself, to follow the God nudgings more and more, to use what is in my hand.

What is in your hand? And what nudgings have you felt lately?


oneordinaryday said...

I love what you said about "baked blessings." : )

Myrna said...

Hello Fiona! Sandy introduced us at church just a few Sunday's ago. Great post! Thank you for affirming that hospitality is simple and a sharing what you have---it need not be fancy or expensive.
I love to cook (more than bake) and this time of year, I make soup---always in a BIG batch (way too big for our empty nest) Homemade soup is a great way to bless others. Whether delivered or in my home. The Lord is always faithful to let me know who to share with.

Grace said...

This so well explains true hospitality. Miz Sandy is lucky to have you as a friend! Our son-in-law has rheumatoid arthritis and regularly takes home-baked goods to the staff at the clinic he goes to. He realized one day how cranky people in pain can be--including himself--and determined to try harder for the medical people who assist him. A small gesture on his part, but they definitely look forward to his appointments now! My nudging recently is that we haven't had people over to our home for meals enough lately, so I'll be working to rectify that in the coming weeks.

Denise said...

What a great reminder! Thanks for sharing....I tried to read the whole post in 'accent' :).

Jenny said...

What a beautiful and inspiring post. I don't always heed those "nudgings" and I should.

So many good thoughts here. Thank you. You've inspired me to get baking (something I love to do) and share with others.

Gina said...

What a great reminder-we should all listen to those nudging moments more. And I love that Rick Warren quote!

Trish said...

What a beautiful post....nudgings are good indicators to 'listen to'. Sometimes I need a real 'push'.

Smelling Coffee said...

Thanks for posting this. I have some time on my hands right now, and this post has caused me to think of it, and what I can give, in a new light. Thanks!

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality said...

Sandy, I'm so excited that I won your giveaway. It's been a very lucky week for me & the 2nd one I've won. What a blessing! Thanks so much & congrats again on 3 years. You started before I did. I'll be 3 in February. :)

The romantic query letter and the happy-ever-after said...

I love this blog so much I can hardly stand it. You got me. You know there is something to be said of a passion expressed well, sadly I’m not the one to say it but I’ll say this, well done.

Kirstin said...

Wonderful post! I love the difference you shared between entertaining and hospitality! There have been times where I've just felt the need to make something for someone simply to bless them!!

Pat said...

Beautiful post! I'm a huge believer in "baked blessings" as I love to bake too. Years ago when I lived in another area, I saw a lot of homeless people between my work and my home. I started baking bread, making sandwiches and soup and delivering to them during the winter. Some people cautioned me that I shouldn't go into those areas but I always asked God to go with me and before me and I was always safe. I think He knew my intent was good and they needed the food I was bringing.

Thank you again for sharing!

Pat said...

Me again! :-)

Would it be possible to have the recipe for the bars shown in the pic?

Brenda Leyland said...

Nice to meet your New Zealand friend and to read her great posting! I'd love to sample some of those goodies you displayed! Yum yum.

Blessings to you both!

Betsy said...

I enjoyed this...and also taking a peak at her blog, too! Thanks, Sandy!

Can you tell me about the dessert in the first picture? Is it yours? Is there a recipe somewhere? Looks incredible.

~j~ said...

beautiful, simply, yet powerfully stated.

Suzann @ The Olive Cottage said...

Such a wonderful post. Definitely gives you "food" for thought.

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