Halloween is coming! As a child, I loved to trick or treat. My efficiency-minded personality really shone in my Halloween planning – I made sure to use a strong pillowcase because they were bigger and stronger than plastic bags or bucket, and I strategically picked which streets I’d frequent based on the number of decorated houses – correlating enthusiasm about Halloween to better candy! But you know what’s weird? After all that effort to get the best candy, I usually saved it for last. I ate the not-so-good candy, eyeing the “good” stack for yummy times to come. But most of the time, by the time I got to them, they were melted, or at least stale.
God gives us gifts and talents and when we use them to do His will, we glorify Him. These gifts are like super powers, but don’t always have to be the gift of strength, flight, or the ability to see through walls. Case and point – did you ever watch Captain Planet? I did and thought that Heart was the best hero! When I told a close friend that, he laughed and proceeded to say that Heart was his least favorite (and perhaps not even a REAL superhero). Well, everyone is entitled to his/her own opinion (even the WRONG one…just kidding!).. But my point is – we can all use our gifts – even gifts that others might not view as gifts – to do GREAT things out of love for Jesus Christ, things that will be on our “good list” (Matthew 25: 31-46) when the final judgement happens. I don’t think God is going to ask us why we didn’t save the world or expect that we spend all the money we have on the least in our midst. I think He IS going to ask us what we did with the SPECIFIC talents, to see how we invested them (Matthew 25: 14-30).
Halo Tip #2: And if you are a hoarder – I have a solution that may work for you (yes this aside is relevant to my blog – remember, you can’t take anything with you to Heaven, so you might as well get unattached to it on earth). For things that MEAN something to me, for example, things that were stored in my room at my parents’ house, but things that realistically, I would never look at again, I took pictures of them and put them on my computer. My screensaver from Google Picasa, my photo editor, randomly scrolls through pictures on my hard drive, so every so often I see the object and remember it fondly. For these things, I also have the satisfaction of knowing that I donated them and hopefully someone else can put it to good use and make new memories for it.
Halo Tip #3: If you love TV (and pay for it), I recommend a DVR of some kind. Why? Because with it, you get to CONTROL the TV and not be subject to a show’s schedule. It frees you to go to great stuff like Catholic events around the Diocese without wondering what show you’ll be missing. I remember being shocked in college (before my tv watching started) that people would reject FREE FOOD because their favorite shows were on. Secondly, read my first aside again. If your TV lets you show your photos (either through its hard drive, the DVR, or by connecting your computer) try it! Again, Google Picasa is what I use to set a picture slideshow as a screensaver or show. Instead of watching TV shows, watch pictures of the fun times with your friends and family – re-remember all the fun you have when you’re not watching TV. This will definitely put you in a good mood. Next, try playing some of your favorite music while you watch the slideshow (Pandora will create music stations based on what you like with amazing accuracy!). Before long you’ll be Singing – and then remember to turn that Singing to the Giver of All Good Things (including TV, jams, DVRs, trick or treating candy, and everything else…)
Note: Reflections in this blog are my own and do not represent the positions of my employer.