Saturday, January 10, 2009

A Request for Help: Spiritual Alms

This is going to be short, but, due to unexpected events outside my control last week, I am not in a position to give alms right now in the way that I had anticipated when I made my resolution for this month. As a result, I have been struck this week by the idea of giving spiritual alms - and how to do that "in secret". I don't have an answer yet, and I don't want to fall back on an easy answer, so right now I simply am asking for input from those who read this.

What think ye? How might I (and you) share of our abundance spiritually but do so in a way that is consistent with the admonition to give our alms in secret and not for the praise of man?


Anonymous said...

Add to the complexity that we know some personal spiritual alms are non-transferable (oil in the lamps and all that)

Interesting thoughts, I'd say in Mormon Praxis, the prayer roll is a great place to start.

Patty said...

I think that prayer is one of the most powerful ways of giving spiritual alms. Not only are those people in your heart and thoughts, but you're turning to Him who has the real power to help them, and doing so with charity and compassion. And this is one way that you can give alms without it being known.
Another way to go about this would be to do things within your own family or home. It can be trickier to do service without being caught with your family around you, but if you look for times and ways you'll find things to do to help them.
One more thought- anonymous "thank you" or "thinking of you" cards. I know we already have a secret "friend" in the ward who has gone much further than just cards, but even a simple "thank you" note for someone who serves in the ward or community or a quick note to let someone know that someone else notices them and cares can really make a difference.

The Faithful Dissident said...

I feel that I both give and receive "spiritual alms" from some of those I have met through blogging. I have good days and bad days, and since most of my time is spent alone, unless you count my cats and my husband when he's not working, life can be pretty lonely sometimes. I've met some who have challenges way greater than mine, who have taught me a lot, and others who can perhaps learn from some of my experiences. We boost each other up spiritually and emotionally, through personal e-mails and messages, even though most of us have never actually met, and it's what keeps us going.

Anonymous said...

If your area got some snow recently, you could clean off someone's car without telling them. I had someone do that for me at work last week and it truly added to my reserve of gratitude, which is a very spiritual quality.

Julia Murphy said...

Inside that "Thinking of you" card... as a simple statement such as - "You matter" or "You're important."

It might seem almost too simple, but the Savior taught complexities through simple acts. I can't imagine how I might feel if that arrived in my mailbox from a neighbor, ward member, or family.

Papa D said...

Thanks, everyone. I have been under the weather today (enough to have missed church, and that's a rarity), so reading your responses has been a bit of a reception of spiritual alms for me - though not in total privacy, still personal and offered individually.

I appreciate it. The advice has been good, but, in this context particularly, I appreciate the thought more than the quality of the comments.