Jennybell flipped off her shoes and sunk into the leather couch at home. She shared it with her two flat mates who were more like an extension of herself: They thought alike, dressed alike, and to some extent, looked alike. Jennybell was the most charming, charismatic and approachable one though.
Cristobel walked in the room, hearing the familiar clunk clunk frooom of shoes flipped off in the ample hallway and bottoms sinking into the couch.
“Oh, hi, J-Bell, I thought that was you.” She said as she entered the 100m2 living-room. “Why such the long face?” She enquired of J-Bell noticing she didn’t appear as flamboyant as usual. Perhaps it was because Kent was taking off to the Bahamas without her this weekend. She thought as she shimmied over on the opulent couch.
“Oh is it that obvious?” J-Bell asked, reaching for the controls of their 48inch flat screen TV, whilst munching on some recently bought caviar.
“Well”, she continued.“I got to church this morning and Mrs. Jones in her usual bright cheery voice greeted me with her typical greeting and fake plastic smile. “Hello blessed of God, it´s good to be blessed,” like she has some magic formula or something.
Then we sang a song: “I am blessed, I am blessed oh what a joy to be blessed.” And to top it off everyone at the end of the sermon said “may the Lord bless you and cause His face to shine on you.”
Cristobel was slightly confused at why that would cause J-Bell to be so long in the tooth and she asked her why. The answer she got was not what she expected as J-Bell explained that most people just use this expression like some magic formula but doesn’t really have a meaning: like saying the “Our Father” prayer without meaning it. “What do they mean? Stay blessed!!!”
Cristobel, who normally had an answer for everything was rendered speechless. “You are right- it doesn’t mean anything – I mean, stay blessed????”
The two of them quickly dropped the topic and forgot about it as Annabelle came through the door, clinking her diamond encrusted keys against her Ray bands. They had been waiting all day to see her to find out news of her next adventure to some far flung land.
Perhaps this time she would go to somewhere like the Maldives or the Virgin Islands on the yacht her father had bought her two years ago for graduating college.
Annabelle entered the room strangely quietly and removed her ray bands and placed them on the side of the mahogany table. She looked at her iPhone 5 at a text message and took the remote control from J-Bell´s hand without uttering a word. She flicked through the channel´s until she found the one she was looking for: Food for Thought.
On the screen there were harrowing pictures of children with swollen bellies due to hunger and malnutrition. Young orphans out in the street scouring the dry baron streets for food. Wailing parents, crying for their dead babies who they could not afford to feed. And so the images continued.
J-Bell grabbed the controls back from Annabelle and switched off the TV and took a long look at her friend, who seemed to be crying. “Stop the tears and tell us where you are going.” She said impatiently not wanting to deal with girlie tears.
“I´m going there.” She said pointing to the blank screen. “To Africa.” “Are you out of your mind?” Cristobel and J-Bell asked in unison. “No, I am not, but I have been. For years I´ve lived a life of luxury having everything I´ve wanted, but what have I given to God?
I read a verse today in Acts about what Paul did and said as an encouragement to the Christians talking about his work for the Lord “we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
I want to make my life count.. I want to be a blessing.
J-Bell couldn’t believe it. She huffed and went to bed and tried to sleep, but the words of Annebelle kept swirling around her head “It´s more blessed to give than receive.”
She finally fell asleep and dreamt she was a child in Africa waiting for hope. When she woke up, she truly understood what it meant to be blessed. She also knew she would be going to Africa with Annebelle.
Note: We must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.” – Acts 20:35c NIV
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