Letting Your Lil Light Shine | day 18: plan a shine party
What's better than joining our efforts with others to increase our shine? Making a party out of it!
That's just what some friends and I did in September. We got together for a girls' night (most of us are moms, so it's an extra special treat to get together without kids), enjoying sweet treats and girl talk while we made cookies for our neighbors and wrote notes of encouragement to send to a friend. It's that simple to take our own little break of community and friendship and encouragement, and use it to inspire community and friendship and encouragement with and for others in our lives.
What does it take to throw your own shine party? Keep reading to find out!
If you're part of a small group (or started one on day 11), or have a recurring girls' night, that's an obvious place to start. Maybe you're involved in women's or youth ministry in your church or simply have a few friends you could invite over. These are all great opportunities to shine brighter with those you already spend time with.
Food, fun, and fellowship.
Hang streamers, make shine cupcakes and turn it into an actual party. Have a low key get together with friends at a coffee shop. Host a couples game night. Create a scavenger hunt (like this awesome event from Ashley of The Shine Project). Make it a group event for the women or youth or anyone interested at your church. This is the fun part. The part where it's okay to take a break from work and from the mundane of our lives. Where it's okay to have fellowship and fill the need for fun and enjoyment. (Yes, those are needs.)
Pay it forward.
The goal is to turn a fun time into an opportunity to shine in our own communities and circles. Bake cookies for coworkers or neighbors. Make a quilt for someone in the hospital, a nursing home, or who just needs to be wrapped in warmth and love. Write encouraging notes to family or friends. Leave positive messages for strangers with sticky notes or sidewalk chalk. Collect food or supplies for a local shelter. Brainstorm ideas for random acts of kindness to do throughout the week and tell each other about. Put purpose behind our fun.
When we soak in all of our fun and enjoyment and let it end there, we risk becoming selfish and short-sighted and missing the point of living for others. Or, as Solomon put it in Ecclesiastes, it becomes "vanity of vanities." These little acts, however, are little reminders that it takes just a little joint effort with "our people" to make a lasting and positive impression on those around us. Letting our lil lights shine for the Kingdom!