I’m going to switch gears this week and write about an adult book that has impacted me.
Cami Walker has multiple sclerosis. At the point of devasting illness and deep depression, she was challenged by her South African healer, Mbali Creazzo, to give away 29 gifts in 29 days. 29 Gifts: How A Month of Giving Can Change Your Life is her story.
Cami Walker has a very different worldview from me. She embraces lots of new age philosophy, acupuncture and yoga. She is comfortable with all religions and visits a garden with statues to all the major religions of the world. Cami has lived in San Francisco and now lives in L.A.
I live in Greenville, South Carolina at the heart of the Bible Belt. I believe in one God, the Bible and Jesus Christ as the only way to salvation. When I meditate, it’s on the scripture For me to be too ecumenical detracts from the God I worship-the God who is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I am leery of vegan diets, alternative health plans, acupuncture, and idols to other gods.
Yet, I have been profoundly impacted by 29 Gifts. Cami is unflinchingly honest. She shares her bouts with self-pity and squabbles with her husband as freely as she shares her acts of generosity.
Cami’s gifts often do not involve major planning. Nor is the giving out of obligation- . Don’t we all know people who give out of martyrdom rather than joy? Cami’s kind of giving is motivated by giving others delight, like making a meal for husband or finding that just right present. She also talks about receiving gifts graciously from others.
It’s clear that setting out to give 29 gifts changed Cami’s life. Her health improved, she was able to get her business going again.
Lest anyone thinks I have donated a kidney to my ex-husband, my two main gifts to others have been handling out water bottles and picking up trash in my neighborhood while walking the dog. I haven’t even focused on doing something daily just being open to opportunities. (like carrying a cooler in my car.)
I have had a difficult year of facing unemployment and limited resources. This book has challenged me to live out my Christianity, be grateful and to get over myself. It has aided me in my spiritual struggle to leave the past behind and put away negative thinking.