I need to explain something to my faithful readers and maybe a few lurkers.
I’m old. I know that some of you won’t think 46 is old, but it is. Due to a mysterious illness, I’m older than my chronological age reveals.
Now that’s nothing new to my faithful readers and maybe a few lurkers. But…
What you may not know, I’ve been writing from a place of disappointment in a new season of life. It is a season I don’t really understand, but it’s here and I’m dealing with it, keeping my eyes on Jesus.
I write to reveal what I’m learning and what I’ve learned. You see, I had a vibrant and fulfilling ministry before this illness took hold of my life. Sometimes I wonder why it has been taken away, but I do believe it is for my good and His glory.
I don’t really like to talk about “successes” in ministry because 1) I’m not there now and 2) I don’t want to sound arrogant. But I’ve come to see many are struggling with what they are to DO in this walk of faith.
When I first began asking the Lord what He would have me DO for Him, I didn’t feel He was answering me quickly enough. I felt a pull to study, to equip myself with the truth, for whatever He would “eventually” lead me to DO. I could see I was created a woman and had married a man and we eventually would have children. In that understanding, certain roles had already been ordained for me. God first, my husband, my children, then the world. With my priorities straight, I knew I would be doing my best to NOT send into the world more hurting and dysfunctional people. I took those roles seriously and worked within my home to create a safe, secure haven for the people He gave me. So what about ministry outside of my home?
With the tiime I had left, I taught. He enabled me to teach, I knew this was the gift He had given me. Through neighborhood and church Bible studies, speaking at various functions, homeschool seminars, and visiting my neighbors…I taught. But it didn’t stop there.
How can we live in such a hurting world, knowing our neighbors all around us, and not reach out to meet their needs?
The neighbor struggling to feed her family, eating peanut butter and jelly two times a day because that’s all she has — her husband is spending every extra dime to feed his addiction. Do I make a big batch of spaghetti sauce to help her feed her children? Once, twice…every week?
The new family in the neighborhood having immigrated from Mexico, using lawnchairs for furniture. I have a set of living room furniture, in good shape, do I have a garage sale or explain to the mother that I would love to fill a need? Watching the teenage boys carrying the furniture away, being thanked so warmly, for doing what? Just giving away the stuff I’ve accumulated.
The distraught mother at the park, sharing her story as we watch our children play. She has nowhere to go and it’s getting late. Do I invite her in for lunch? All I know is her name…Angelica. Yes, bring her in, feed her, ask her what she needs. She needs me to watch her baby…? Just for a little bit, while she finds a place to stay…? OK…sure. I love babies so I’ll hold him and sing “Jesus Loves Me” ’til he falls asleep, wondering if he’s just been abandoned…? No, she finally returns around midnight. I fell in love with that little guy and have prayed for him and his mom many times.
So … the question has been this month … What can I DO? At this point in my life, this season, not much. But please, let me encourage you…those of you with strong bodies…
Reach out. See the hurts. Make yourself available within your sphere of influence. And talk about why as you do it…let them know you love your Saviour and He has enabled you to give.