I’m not talking about sponsoring a child through Food for the Hungry (though our family does) or adopting a Sunday school class.
I want you to think BIGGER.
What group in your community could use some love and encouragement?
A few years ago God allowed me to witness what happened when our women’s ministry adopted the women at a local abuse shelter.
Doing so radically changed the direction of our women’s ministry and our women’s hearts.
It all started with an innocent drive for food and toiletries for the shelter. One of the girls on our team reached out and asked the director if there were any other needs. The next thing I knew we were bringing in lunch and participating in an afternoon of pampering with the women.
We made no-sew fleece blankets for them with plans to make more with them. We brainstormed ideas for game nights and craft nights.
God surprised us all when the director at the shelter provided transportation so the women could come to trunk-or-treat with their kids and to our annual table event to hear our speaker.
It was truly a God-thing.
He blew open the doors.
God moved the hearts of the women at our church.
They embraced these sweet, hurting souls in ways I never imagined they would.
But God knew.
And while those projects are worth-while and greatly needed, we also need to make sure we are involving our women in local mission work that builds relationships.
Where might God open a door for your women to love and encourage others?
- Is there a lower-income apartment complex near your church?
- What about a struggling school in your community?
- Perhaps there’s a trailer park?
- A neighborhood with mostly immigrants or refugees?
- A women’s shelter?
- A children’s home?
- Does your community need a Teen MOPS group?
There are people who need what your women can offer.
It doesn’t have to cost anything but time.
Become lunch buddies with children at the local elementary school. Tutor a middle school student. Offer homework help in an apartment complex.
Once you start building relationships you’ll begin to see other needs and ways you might be able to help.
Start simple. Do a food drive. A school supply drive. A clothing drive. An underwear drive.
Years ago (at a different church than the one mentioned above) we held a children’s clothing swap. We had piles of donations but only one person show up to shop! We couldn’t believe it. But God knew those clothes would soon be going to an apartment complex where our church was hosting a Kid’s Club once a week. I held back tears as those sweet little ones “shopped” not just for themselves but for their brothers and sisters.
Spend some time praying about who God wants your women to invest in.
God may just throw the doors wide open without you even asking.
If you regularly reach a group outside of your church, would you share your story with the rest of us in the comments? Let’s encourage one another to step outside of our churches and outside of our comfort zones.