Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Chance to Serve

On Wednesday our life group served a meal at the St. Vincent de Paul Outreach and Food Pantry. We made the decision that both Delaney and Keaton were old enough to help and brought them along too.

On the way there we talked about what kind of people we might encounter and that no matter what their outward appearance might be that they should be treated with love and respect. Smile, be friendly and most of all serve them as if you were waiting on a very special guest.

From my perspective, we live in a community where the disadvantaged are mostly invisible. A small town in the midwest with lovely parks, nice places to eat, and good schools. You generally don't see people who resemble the homeless and I don't think I've ever seen anyone hanging out in the streets begging. You can generally go about your business and not be made to feel "uncomfortable" by the less fortunate. I think that might be a bad thing.

You see there are people who society deems the have nots or disadvantaged living in every community. To pretend they don't exist in the places we live is wrong. When I looked at the room filled with hungry people who had waited outside in the freezing weather, I did not see statistics. I saw worn and weathered faces of sisters, brothers, grandparents, sons, daughters, fathers and mothers. Each of them children of God. Each with a story uniquely theirs.

The reality is that any one of us is one job loss, one medical diagnosis, one bad decision or one tragedy away from being THAT person.

I don't know that a bowl of soup and a friendly smile made a difference to anyone going through our line, but I do know that I was blessed by serving. My children were blessed by serving. We will do it again and I hope you will think about doing it to.

There will always be poor people in the land.
Therefore I command you to be openhanded
toward your brothers and toward the
poor and needy in your land.
Deuteronomy 15:11


Kathy C. said...

I think our kids need to learn compassion. Sometimes it's uncomfortable but better for them to see now. Perhaps they'll be a bit more grateful for what they have.

Amanda said...

Thanks for sharing. What a blessing.

Sean and Lisa said...

There but for the grace of God go I. That's what I remind myself often.
You are right, it could easily happen to any of us. So thankful that you were Jesus' hands and feet to these precious ones and that your children were too! The best part though is that they saw mommy living out Christs' example!
May you forever be changed by those eyes...
Much love!

God's Grace said...

Oh you are so right! Just last night Evan told me he wanted to raise money for orphans (keep in mind he is only 4) And he was really serious about it too. He wants to build a lemonaide cute. And I can't wait until we can do this with him....