Dear friends,

I’ve been thinking a lot about “community,” or rather our lack of community these days. We have become so separated from each other that most of us barely know the person living across the street from us.

We all struggle with the overwhelming amount of tasks that need finished in a day or a week. We feel such a burden to get them all done ourselves. Just the idea of the things that need done is draining and sucks a lot of energy out of us… making it even harder to complete those tasks.

Recently, I was enlightened with the idea that we ALL have God given gifts, and these gifts come natural to us and actually GIVE us more energy when doing them.

What if there was a way to exchange our gifts and simultaneously knock a chore off of your To Do list? I can offer you an hour taking your family photos in exchange for your hour organizing my office. Afraid of heights? My husband can offer you an hour cleaning your gutters in exchange for your hour changing the oil in his car. Or maybe your child needs some help with math? Sally down the street will offer an hour of tutoring in exchange for your hour picking up her groceries.

But what if you want something that someone offers, but you can’t offer anything they want in exchange? No worries! This is where the brilliance of an Hour Exchange comes in. Whenever you complete an hour of service, you earn an hour credit in your account. That hour can then be exchanged with any member of The Gift Exchange that offers what you want.

So, if I offer 10 different people each an hour of my photography services, I earn 10 hours in my account. I can then exchange those hours to have one person organize my office, another to work on my website, another to fix the furnace in my house, another (or maybe 2 or 3) to cook meals for my family for the week, another to tutor my daughter in math, and still have some hours left in my account!

All the while, I get to do more of what I love and less of what I don’t, and so do the other members of our group. We also build “community!” We get to know our neighbors and the people down the street. We learn how to accept help from others… we break down our pride and build up our relationships. People need to be needed. It is ingrained in all of us. The sooner we learn and accept that we are all INTERdependent, the sooner we will find more contentment and satisfaction in with our lives.

So, I invite you to join our group. There are plenty of needs, and we all have something to offer!

Please click on the link below and fill out an application. We will add you to our system, and then you can fill out your profile and enter your Offers (gifts) and Requests (needs/wants,) and start exchanging gifts!

I am extremely excited about this, and I am so grateful for your willingness to participate!


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