Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Make All Things New - A Geeks of Faith Devotion

          It is a new year.  People are making resolutions.  Some people are glad the old year is gone, and some may wish it wasn’t.  We lost some great icons this past year: Jerry Vandyke from coach, David Ogden Stiers from Mash, Steven Hawking, Tim O’Connor from Buck Rogers,  Margot Kidder, Charlotte Rae from Facts of Life, Aretha Franklin, Robin Leach, Burt Reynolds, Anthony Bourdain, Stan Lee, Both George and Barbara Bush, and at the very end Penny Marshall and many more.
          Sometimes it makes me feel old to see my childhood (and even adult) heroes pass away.  So we look into the new year and hope it will be better than the last.  Every year we will lose people who meant something to us.  Every year we will have some good times and some bad.
          This new year is what we make of it.  We can face it with dread or we can face it with hope.  Our attitude makes a difference.  When I am down I often turn to the Psalms.  The psalmist really knew how to look toward God in good times and bad.  For example listen to the first few lines of Psalm 96: 
O sing to the Lord a new song;
    sing to the Lord, all the earth.
2 Sing to the Lord, bless his name;
    tell of his salvation from day to day.
3 Declare his glory among the nations,
    his marvelous works among all the peoples.
4 For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;
    he is to be revered above all gods.
We are called to tell of God’s glory on a daily basis.  This Psalm makes me think of one of my favorite songs from the musical “the King and I”
“Whenever I feel afraid, I hold my head erect
And whistle a happy tune so no one will suspect I'm afraid
While shivering in my shoes, I strike a careless pose
And whistle a happy tune and no one ever knows I'm afraid
The result of this deception is very strange to tell,
For when I fool the people I fear, I fool myself as well
I whistle a happy tune, and every single time,
The happiness in the tune convinces me that I'm not afraid”
Now the Psalmist isn’t telling us to fool ourselves into being happy.  The Psalm wants us to remind ourselves and others every day about God’s faithfulness and how much God cares about us.
          It is all in our attitude.  If we face the new year with the thought that God goes with us, it makes a difference.  Yes, there will be hard times.  Sometimes we will fail.  Sometimes we will get hurt, but that doesn’t mean that God won’t be there to bless us this year, too.  We have scripture to remind us of God’s faithfulness.  We also need to remind each other that not only is God there for them, but we are, too.  We don’t walk through this world alone.
          One last bit of hope for the new year.  The scriptures also allow us to peek at the end.  Spoiler alert:  God wins in the end!  So I will leave you with the words of Revelation 21:5: 
And the one who was seated on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 8, 2018

The Value of Rudolph from a Victim of Bullying

Tonight one of my favorite Christmas specials comes on, "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer."  There has be a lot of complaining and suggestions to boycott it because it "advocates bullying."  As a victim of bullying, myself, I think that these people are missing the main point of the story.

Yes, Rudolph and Hermie are bullied for being different, even by Santa, but that isn't the point of the story.  The point is learning to value each individual for their unique gifts.  It is a journey for the misfits to find their own worth AND for the bullies to realize they were wrong.  By the end of the film everyone who had bullied the misfits realize their error, are truly repentant, apologize, and recognize the value of each individual's gift.

That is what I dreamed of as a child.  I didn't dream that the bullies would be punished, but that they would see how great I was and accept me for who I am.  Rudolph gave me hope that if everyone at the North Pole could realize their mistakes, maybe my tormentors would, too.

Now a word about the well meaning parents and advocates that want to protect their children from stories like this one.  They are doing exactly what the King did on the Island of Misfit toys.  They are separating and isolating their children to "protect them from the cruelty of the world."  Their hearts may be in the right place, but that isn't what a child needs.  Yes, the misfit toys were protected from being made fun of, but they never were able to fulfill their potential as toys.  They were never loved, played with, and accepted for who they were.

In the end, Santa who had inadvertently bullied and misunderstood the value of each unique individual repents.  He finds the beauty in each toy, elf, and reindeer, and even a Bumble.  Then, he helps them find the place where they can grow and thrive.

I believe that this is a wonderful story about acceptance, repentance, and forgiveness.  It is a story of hope for those who feel different and put down.  It is a story of the little guy winning.  In that it is a valuable parable. 

It is said those who forget history are doomed to repeat it.  I also think that those who are protected and sheltered from the meanness in the world 1. won't know how to deal with it.  and 2. are at risk of bullying others because they haven't been shown examples of how wrong and hurtful words and actions can be.

I plan to continue to watch Rudolph, and as I showed it to my children, I will show it to my grandchildren, as a parable about how we are each beautiful and unique children of God.

Have a blessed Christmas.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Holding on for a Hero - A Geeks of Faith Advent Devotion

This week is the first week of Advent.  Advent is the start of the Christian year.  It is a time of waiting.  We are waiting for Christmas and the Christ Child to be born.  But the scriptures for this first week also remind us that we are waiting for Christ to return.
          I find it interesting that in the past year both DC and Marvel have dealt with the death of some of our favorite heroes in their movies.  DC dealt with the death of Superman and Marvel killed at least half of their heroes in Infinity War.  Now those of us familiar with comic books know that the hero will somehow come back whether in the story itself like in “Death of Superman” and “Infinity War” or in the next reboot or some Elseworld story. 
          But it still makes us sad.  How many of you cried when Superman died (or at least at the funeral scene) or when Thanos used the Infinity Gauntlet?  The characters in the movie don’t know that the hero is coming back.  All they know is that the one who gave hope in a dark and hopeless situation is dead and they don’t know where to turn.
          I don’t think it is coincidence that both these movies came out in the past couple of years.  Our society seems out of control.  There seems to be evil around every corner.  Everyone is looking for a hero or some way back to a safer world.
          That is the whole theme of Advent.  The world was so messed up that the Jews were praying for a Messiah, a savior to get them out of the horrors of the world.  That Savior was born in a manger 2000 years ago.  But just like in our movies, the world killed him.  Jesus was crucified at the hands of the corrupt Roman government at the urging of his own religious leaders.  For Jesus’ followers this was devastating.  Fortunately they only had to wait three days for him to come back.
          But Jesus didn’t stay.  Jesus had to go back into heaven and left us here to carry on for him.  But unlike in the movies Jesus promised to return.  Luke 21:25-28 is part of the scriptures for the first Sunday in Advent.  Listen to what it says:  “There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on the earth distress among nations confused by the roaring of the sea and the waves. 26 People will faint from fear and foreboding of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 27 Then they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in a cloud’ with power and great glory. 28 Now when these things begin to take place, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
          For Christians Jesus’ return is the best news ever.  No matter how scary the book of Revelation makes it sound it is good news for us.  Jesus tells us to stand up and raise our heads because our redemption is drawing near.  We will be rescued from the evil world.
          Unfortunately we have to wait more than the month that we have to wait for the next issue of the comic book to come out, and even more than the year or so that we have to wait for a movie sequel.  Yes, Jesus promised to return, but it has been 2000 years.  Sometimes it can be hard to wait.  Some people give up hope and turn their back on their faith.  It is hard to believe in God triumphing in the end when evil seems to win so often.
          The important part is what we do while we wait.  Advent reminds us that we need to continue to hope.  Jesus will keep his promise and come back to rescue us.  While we wait we need to be the agents of hope.
          When Superman died in the movie, Batman pulled together Wonder Woman, Aqua Man, Flash, and Cyborg to keep fighting against evil.  Ok, I know we don’t have the powers of the Justice League.  So, how about this instead;  In the movie “Spiderman” when the Green Goblin tries to kill Spiderman while he is rescuing Mary Jane and a Gondola full of school children the people of New York rally and begin throwing things at Green Goblin to distract him enough for Spidey to save everyone.  They had no super powers but as the man said, “You mess with one of us, you mess with all of us.”
          While we wait for Jesus’ return we are called to do what he would do.  Stand up for what is right, protect the innocent, seek justice, be kind.  Shine Jesus’ light in our dark world.  Give them the hope that we know.  When it seems that the heavens are being shaken by the evil in the world hold on to hope and look up.  Jesus is coming.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Who Is My Neighbor - A Geeks of Faith Devotion for Election Day

Election day is upon us.  In a matter of a few hours half our nation will be really happy and half will be angry or depressed.  A little while ago I posted something about the greatest commandments;  you know love God and love your neighbor.  And mentioned that posting hate mongering articles that were just meant to hurt or anger your opponent wasn’t loving your neighbor.  As Christians we should stop name calling and spreading hate.  One of my friends said flat out, “I can’t do that.  I guess that means you think I am part of the problem?”  I didn’t fall for the bait.  I had just said name calling was wrong, but it hurt and was frustrating.
          I have dear friends, family, and church members who are on the far right and on the far left.  They are all good people, good Christians until politics come up.  Then, I don’t even recognize them.  They literally seem to hate the other side.  That is tearing our country apart.  It is also destroying what Jesus teaches and what God wants from us.
          There is a scripture story that deals with this exact thing.  It is the story of the Good Samaritan.  Before I read it for you I want to make sure you understand it’s setting.  The Jews and the Samaritans HATED each other.  They both claimed that they were the faithful remnant of Israel after returning from exile in Babylon.  So, they all worshipped the same God and believed the same thing except where you should worship.  The Jews said Jerusalem and the Samaritans had a mountain in Samaria that was their Holy site.  Now, they hated each other so much that there was a saying in Israel that the only good Samaritan was a dead one.  They would spit on them.  They were forbidden to talk to them or have business with them.  They truly hated each other.
          Now listen with me to Luke 10:25-37 commonly known as the story of the Good Samaritan.
25 Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus.[a] “Teacher,” he said, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 He said to him, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” 27 He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.”
29 But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32 So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii,[b] gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.’ 36 Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”
          I can imagine that the Lawyer wasn’t thrilled.  The hated Samaritan was the one that Jesus portrayed as following the commandments.  So, you can’t say that the people you hate are outside of the commandment to love your neighbor as yourself.
          I saw a news story that is going viral that is this story played out in real life.  When the shooting happened in the Synagogue in Pittsburgh one of the ER nurses was the son of a rabbi who didn’t know whether his parents were among those killed.  He was the nurse asked to tend to the shooter when they brought him in.  He didn’t refuse.  He didn’t even say anything mean.  He treated the shooter who would happily put a bullet in his head if he found out he was Jewish.  This nurse treated the man with gentleness and compassion.  The shooter even thanked him for treating him so well.
          Jesus said to us, “Go and do likewise.” Soon the elections will be through and more hate will be spewed from both sides.  The winners will gloat and the losers will rant and rave.  Don’t fall into that trap.  The other side is human.  The other side is American.  Believe it or not, the other side believes that they voted for what will be best for out country.  Most importantly, the other side is made up of beloved children of God.  They are your neighbor regardless of whether or not you agree with them or even like them.  You are called to love them as yourself.  So, when the votes are counted and the election is done think before you post, or rant, or rave, or gloat.  Is your action the loving thing?  Is it kind?  If the situation was reversed would you want them to say or do that to you?  The only way our nation can heal is to stop looking at each other as the hated enemy and start thinking of each other as our neighbor and more than that as our brothers and sisters.  Like brothers and sisters, you don’t have to always agree with them, but you need to love them.

All Hallow's Eve - A Geeks of Faith Devotion

(The Origins of Halloween)
In the first few centuries of the church many Christians (or saints) were killed for their faith.  The church often took time to say prayers of thanks for the saints that went before them.
As early as 270 AD there are records of holding all night prayer vigils in memory of those who died in the faith.
November 1 was set as the official All saints Day under Emperor Charlemagne in the 800s.  Yes, they did place it to coincide with a Celtic pagan festival known as Samhain.  The Celtic people believed that the night of October 31 through the evening of Nov.1 the boundary between worlds was thinner and Spirits from the otherworld could walk in ours.  The church often set it’s early holidays to coincide with pagan celebrations, so that the new Christian converts would not miss their old traditions.  In this case they equated the thought of traveling Spirits with remembering the dead.
Many people are critical about the early church setting our celebrations to coincide with pagan festivals in the area where the church was spreading.  This doesn’t  bother me.  Think of it like this:  You are an avid Star Trek Fan.  You meet someone who is really into Anime.  You want to share the joy of being a Trekker with them.  They say, “That’s all well and good, but I love my Anime conventions and our binge watching parties and the Anime chat rooms.”  Is it wrong to say, “Hey, we have conventions, and watch parties, and chat rooms, too!  Why don’t you join me for the next one.”  That is basically what the early church was doing.  “Oh, you have a big party in the spring celebrating the world coming back to life.  So do we, it’s called Easter and it celebrates God raising Jesus from the dead!  In the middle of winter when the days start getting longer again, you celebrate the hope that spring and longer days will return.  We celebrate the hope that came when Jesus was born.  And when you celebrate spirits walking about in our world, we remember those who have died and gone on to heaven.”  Maybe the church was being practical, maybe it was to make converting less traumatic, but I don’t think that it invalidates what we are celebrating.
OK, so back to the early celebrations.  As time went on there were fewer and fewer martyrs.  Thus, today, All Saints Day (Or All Saints Sunday, the Sunday Closest to November 1) we remember all of the our Christian brothers and sisters who have gone to join the Lord in the “Church Triumphant” in the past year.  (In other words, we remember those Christians who have died in the past year.)  We often say prayers of thanks for those who meant a lot to our own journeys of faith.  All Christians are considered saints.  It has nothing to do with how “good” you are.
Halloween is just a common name for “All Hallows Eve” (The Day before All Hallows Day, All Saints Day).  The traditions we celebrate are actually Medieval superstitions relating to saying the names of the dead.  Some of them probably are bleed overs from “baptizing” Samhain into All Saint’s Day for our Celtic forefathers and mothers.  In the Middle Ages people believed that the evil spirits got agitated knowing that the “good” souls were going to get prayed for and they were not.  So people dressed up as ‘evil” spirits to fool the restless spirits that were roaming about feeling jealous about the holiday to come.  That is where the tradition of dressing up as ghosts and goblins came from.
The church has always asserted that the dead cannot harm you.  When you die, your soul goes immediately to either heaven or hell.  There is no lurking around to bother the living.  But it can be hard to convince superstitious people to give up their beliefs.
There are some churches that feel that dressing up as “evil spirits” leads to evil acts.  Many of them may not know the origin of wearing the costumes was actually to protect against evil.  But today I think the only evil temptations are to eat too much candy, or if you are feeling really naughty TP-ing trees, smashing pumpkins, or egging houses.  My problem with them, is that damaging property is NOT the way to love your neighbor, which is the second greatest commandment.
The Presbyterian Church as well as many others find no harm in trick-or-treating or dressing up for Halloween.  We just want people to remember that it is all in fun.  It is a good chance to get to know your neighbors.  Our HOA is throwing a Pre-trick or treat pizza party for the whole neighborhood so that we can get to know each other better.  I would also encourage you, as you enjoy Halloween, to take a moment out of your November 1st sugar rush, to say a prayer of thanks for all of the people in your life who have made a difference in faith journey, especially those who have passed away and are now with the Lord.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

I'll Be Fine in the End - A Geeks of Faith Dr. Who Devotion

When we watched the Premier of the New Dr. Who she said something that really resonated with me.  Don’t worry, this quote could fit any of the Doctors.  There won’t be any spoilers for those who haven’t seen it yet!  Although I do recommend you see it.  It was very good.  The Doctor, as frequently happens was having identity issues after regenerating.  She said:
The Doctor: Right now, I’m a stranger to myself. There’s echoes of who I was and a sort of call towards who I am. And I have to hold my nerve and trust all these new instincts. Shape myself towards them. I’ll be fine. In the end. Hopefully. I have to be. Because you guys need help. ‘Cause there’s one thing I’m certain of, when people need help, I never refuse. Right. This is going to be fun!
That speech really struck me.  I often feel like that.  There are “echoes of who I was and a sort of call towards who I am. And I have to hold my nerve and trust all these new instincts.”  Whenever life throws me a curve or I am facing great change.  When I was called into the ministry, when Jon-Paul and I were planning our lives together, when one of us gets a job that will mean the other leaving security and taking a leap of faith, even trying to start this Geeks of Faith group.  I don’t really know what I am doing or why God wants me in this place.  I just have to hold on and trust.  I have to trust that Jesus walks with me no matter where life takes me.  I have to trust that if I make mistakes, I will be forgiven and given a chance to start again.  I have to trust that God will be there if life knocks me down.  God will be there to pick me up and dust me off.
But the part of the Doctor’s speech that I loved the best was the last bit.  “I’ll be fine in the end. Hopefully. I have to be. Because you guys need help.  “Cause there’s one thing I’m certain of, when people need help.  I never refuse. Right.”  Even though the Doctor is confused about who she is, she knows in the core of her beliefs.
It is the same for us.  When we are tossed about on the waves of the world we need to remember who we are at the core.  We are children of God, loved and called.  We need to remember whose we are.  We don’t belong to the world.  We don’t belong to a job or a city.  We belong to God.  When we baptize a baby in the Presbyterian church we don’t use their last name.  We use “child of God” or “child of the covenant”.  Yes, our earthly families are important.  They can be a great means of support and comfort.  But they are also human.  They can make mistakes, hurt our feelings, let us down, and even die on us.  Not that we ever want that, but it is life.  There is only one being that will never let us down… not even the Doctor can promise that, but Jesus does.
So, how does knowing that we are beloved children of God help us through times where we don’t know what to do, where to go, or even who we are supposed to be?  We have the Bible to tell us what Jesus is like.  As the Doctor knew in her core that she helped people, we can know that we are supposed to be like Jesus.  We are called to help people, too.
In our Bible content course in seminary there were a few key verses that we were told that we had to know, that we should never forget.  Of course there was John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.”  That is greatly comforting, but it doesn’t help us figure out what we are supposed to do or who we are supposed to be at our core.
There are the two greatest commandments:  Love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength and love our neighbors as ourselves.  That helps a little with who we are called to be.  Another that they said we should never forget was Micah 6:8, “He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
    and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
    and to walk humbly with your God?”
No matter what happens to throw my life into turmoil.  No matter what happens that makes me wonder who I really am, I have this.  I know in my core that I am a child of God.  When I am too upset or confused to remember what that means I can turn to this. “God so loved the world” which includes me.  I need to love God and neighbor.  And this scripture helps me know what loving my neighbor means.  Do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with my God.
I may not know where God is leading, or what I am supposed to do, I may even feel like a stranger to myself, but in my core I know this.  I am loved.  I need to love.  I need to be just.  I need to be kind, and I need to be humble.  Like the Doctor, I know that means that I need to help people.  It is only with that knowledge that I can say, like the Doctor, “This is going to be fun.”
For those who are struggling with who you are and what to do, remember God is there, Jesus is walking with you, and you have been given “companions” to help you on your way.  Like in Dr. Who, sometimes you get to choose them, and sometimes your are thrown together.  Either way remember we are called to be brothers and sisters.  We are called to be that kind and loving presence.  If you are in need of that, look for us at Geeks of Faith on Facebook or leave a message here.” 

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Follow Your Heart With Something You Love - A Geeks of Faith Devotion on Spiritual Gifts

Ever since I was a little girl I have loved musical theatre.  When I grew up I wanted to be on Broadway.  I loved the singing, the dancing, the acting, and the costumes and make up.  When I felt called into the ministry I wanted to argue with God.  Couldn’t I be a Christian singer like Amy Grant or work for a Christian Theatre Company.  As I felt stronger about God’s call part of me thought that I would have to settle for doing good without using my best talents.
          Part of it may come from a well-meaning, but (in my opinion) mistaken Bible study leader.  We took a “Spiritual gifts inventory” test to determine our Spiritual gifts.  It listed the Spiritual Gifts Paul talks of in First Corinthians 12: Wisdom, Knowledge, faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, discernment of Spirits, tongues, and interpretation of tongues.  It gave you percentages of these gifts and what ones were you best in.  I asked where singing fit in, because I had been singing with the choir since I was in preschool.  His answer was that is a nice service to the church but it isn’t a gift of the Spirit.  That made me sad.  Yes, I had some portions of the things listed in Paul’s letter, but the things that made me happy, the things that gave me joy, and that I felt were my best gifts were apparently NOT gifts of the Spirit.  It hurts when someone tells you what you have to offer isn’t what God wants.
          Then, in Seminary we studied the Theologian Frederick Buechner who said, “Your Vocation in life is where your greatest joy meets the world’s greatest need.”  Which made me wonder, does the world need music, and acting, and Cosplay?”  I was sure that God was calling me to be a minister, and there was great need… But did I have to leave out what gives me joy?  Buechner suggested that I didn’t.
          It was many years later that I found a book on Spiritual gifts that mentioned that Paul wasn’t giving a definitive list.  He was listing gifts he had seen in the Church in Corinth.  That didn’t mean those were the only gifts the Spirit gave.  That book suggested that you look at the 2nd half of the chapter.   Verses 12-27 say: 12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.
14 Indeed, the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15 If the foot would say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear would say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole body were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many members, yet one body. 21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 On the contrary, the members of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and those members of the body that we think less honorable we clothe with greater honor, and our less respectable members are treated with greater respect; 24 whereas our more respectable members do not need this. But God has so arranged the body, giving the greater honor to the inferior member, 25 that there may be no dissension within the body, but the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together with it; if one member is honored, all rejoice together with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.
          Each one of us was specially created in the image of God.  We were each given gifts that are unique to us.  Every good gift can be used for the kingdom.  So, what do you love?  What are your greatest gifts that bring you joy?  Then think about how that gift can fill “the world’s greatest need.”
          Do you love to Cosplay?  How could that fill a need?  I have seen groups dress up as Super Heroes and cartoon characters to visit kids in the hospital.  I would love to find a group to do that.
          Are you a book worm?  Find an elementary school that needs someone to read to the children, or a nursing home where you could read to someone who can no longer see the words on the page.
          If you like to sing, join a church choir or Christmas carol at hospitals and nursing homes or even homeless shelters.
          Are you a gamer?  Volunteer with Big Brothers and big sisters and play games with kids who desperately need love, attention, and good role models.  If you love cooking, volunteer at as soup kitchen or teach kids how to make healthy food.  If you love gardening, start a community garden or contact a charity like the Society of St. Andrews and help glean wasted food to distribute to the hungry.
          Whatever it is that you love to do, that thing that gives you the greatest joy is a gift from God.  God has need for it.  Look around you for where our world has a need that only your gift can fill.