Sunday, October 20, 2013

NOW is the TIME!!!

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, ..."

Acts 20:35 

"In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

Over and over in Scripture it talks about how we are to care for the poor, help the needy, reach out to those who have none...It is not a suggestion, it is a command! There aren't stipulations on it "Well, if they would get a job they could feed themselves..." or "Well, their choices got them where they are." We are simply to give to others, to share what we have, to help them and come alongside them.

The problem...we have allowed the Government to come in and take control and do what the church was called to do. I purpose that IF the church as in the body of Christ were to step up and take on this challenge, then the Government would have to close doors on some of these services not for lack of funds but for lack of clients! What if when people came through the doors of our churches - we didn't call the local Human Services to get them help, but we instead began calling members of our church who could meet their need?

 They have car problems? Who in the church is a mechanic?  They need for food? Who in the church has extra or can take them to the store? They have medical needs? Who is a Doctor or Nurse? You get the idea...

I can hear you now...but we are busy, or it would make things tight, or I don't know them, they could be a criminal...Yes! In fact, WE ARE ALL CRIMINALS....we have SIN. The Bible is clear - we deserve death but YET Christ's blood set us free!!! The VERY least we can do is show in a tangible way to others who Christ is!!! 

So, how do we do this? Here are just a few ideas - I bet you can add some of your own, just pray and ask God what YOUR part of taking care of the poor and needy is:

1. EVERY church should have a food pantry on site....members should bring non perishables that can be given out. The staff should have full authority to distribute according to need....I KNOW that every church has a closet that can be used for this.

2. Create a list of members in your church who can and will reach out with specific services: Mechanics, Doctors, Nurses, Appliance repairmen, Carpenters, Business Men/Women who can help with applications and resumes - when a need arises the staff will have access to a list of those who have the skill set to help out in a ministry mindset.

3. Take inventory of the things YOU have on hand. What material goods do you have that you could give to others - what can be sold so that you can help give to those in need? Now is the time to live in the mind set of less is more...the less I have to maintain for myself, the more I am able to give to others!

4. What homeless shelters or soup kitchens are in your area if any? If there are some - call them and ask when you can volunteer as a family. If there aren't any - talk to your church staff and ask what could be done to start one.

5. Instead of just giving at the holidays, how can you give all year long. Don't get me wrong - there are NUMEROUS great opportunities during the holidays to give and I believe we should - however, hunger, need for clothes and heat, unemployment are problems that people face all year long and we need to reach out all year long.

6. Find a family in need in your community and commit to take them on as a family to reach out to and mentor. Find out birthdays, anniversaries, special needs, etc and make a point to reach out to them on these special dates. Invite them to be a part of your family time, holidays, etc.

"People don't care about what you have to say until they see how much you care." It is almost impossible for someone who is hungry, cold, or in need to be able to think about their eternal need for salvation or the need to be a part of a church family if their everyday needs are not met....

Who do can you and your family reach this week, this month, this year? NOW is the time for we as the church to reach out and be the hands and feet of Jesus!!!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Growing up...

Wow! This whole working fulll time has taken A LOT of adjustment! Don't get me wrong, I still know it was the right thing to do and I am thankful for both my job and the opportunity to help our family financially. However, it has taken some time figure out timing in being a wife, mom, employee and do ministry with my hubby. Getting there though and it seems to be a littler smoother every day!

Anyway, back to blogging! So many things have gone through my mind that I have wanted to blog about in the past few months - however, instead of going back, I think I will just pick up with today. Perhaps I will go back and address some of the other topics later...

Today on my heart is this - my children are quickly growing up!!!!

Hannah is a Jr and has only 19 months until she graduates! Now, in some ways you think that's a long time but reality is, it isn't. Now, I know we are always her parents but the amount of time we have to influence her and guide here is coming quickly to an end. As I ponder this - I have to ask "Have I done all I could?" "When she sees me, does she see Christ?" etc...I am not saying I have failed but I am also admitting that I haven't done all that I could possibly do. I truly desire for her, and all my kids, to have an intimate relationship with Christ. In looking at this, I realize that yes I can tell her the steps to take, the verses to read, the things to do - However, if I don't SHOW her with my own life, my own personal habits, my own relationship with Him; I have not been effective. So...throughout these next months that is my heart, to not merely tell her but to show her!

My sweet Tyler is quickly changing before my eyes as well. In so many ways, he still has the innocent childhood mannerisms and in so many ways he is now my young pre-teen almost teenager. Today this was particularly evident at the audiologist as he was picking out colors for his hearing aides and ear molds. In the past, I have always looked forward to seeing what crazy colors he may pick out - today was no different. Would it be pink? Bright Orange? Green? Nope! He went with grey hearing aides and gray and black molds. WHAT??? My crazy, fun loving, off the charts boy picked grey and black??? Yep...a sign that he is maturing and growing before my eyes....Today was also the first time that he has asked very specific questions about his hearing loss and his ears. Don't misunderstand - I KNOW he needs to take ownership, I KNOW he needs to understand but for this Mamma - it is a reminder that he is growing and maturing and getting closer to the time where he will take an active role in his care...etc. Bittersweet for sure!

Of course, Malachi and Kestra are growing up too - just today, my big one and little one are on my heart as I reflect on the ways they are changing and growing up...

Today - I claim the verse "Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:6

For whatever time I have left with my kids whether a day or ten years, I want to train them in the way they should go - a way that leads to the cross, the King, the Savior - so that when they are old and no longer under my influence they will not depart from it!