Showers of Blessings
- Note cards/stationary/envelopes
- Pens (mix it up and provide a variety of colors)
- Bibles, songbooks, poetry books, inspirational sayings
- Large mailing envelopes
Ask the women to choose three to five people who have not been able to make it to the corps for a while. They may be shut–ins, in retirement homes, recovering from medical issues, or moved away from the corps. The goal is to have each woman write a note of encouragement to these individuals. They can use Bible verses, songs from the songbook, poetry or even inspirational sayings. Encourage the women to pray for each recipient. When the recipient receives their package, they will be showered with many blessings.
Shopping For Those Home Alone
For those individuals confined to their home, one of the frustrating difficulties is the inability to purchase groceries, medical supplies and other needed items. Ask the women to identify one or two individuals whom they would be willing to contact on a weekly basis with the idea that they would pick up these needed items for them. To find people who need shopping help contact those organizations that provide in–home meals such as Meals on Wheels.
“For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink” (Matt. 25:35).
Invite the women to participate in a picnic potluck with various finger sandwiches, chips/crackers with dips, as well as different types of salads.
Use picnic tablecloths on each of the tables along with matching napkins and plates. The materials needed for the service project could serve as centerpieces at each table.
Being Home Alone
Read Matthew 25:34–40.
When I think of “Home Alone,” I think of the 1990 movie of the same title. The story involves an eight–year–old boy, Kevin McAllister (played by Macaulay Culkin) who accidently gets left home alone while the rest of the family sets off on a Christmas vacation. In almost every scene, I find myself laughing hysterically. No matter how much I laughed throughout this movie, young Kevin would tear at my heartstrings. His family didn’t only leave without him; they didn’t even notice that he was missing. He felt alone. He felt forgotten. He felt unloved.
The feeling of being unloved is no laughing matter. It can bring on other feelings such as unworthiness and depression. According to an article in Medical News Today:
- Depression seems to be more common among women than men
- The symptoms include lack of joy and reduced interest in things that used to bring a person happiness
- Life events, such as bereavement, produce mood changes that can usually be distinguished from the features of depression
- The causes of depression are not fully understood but are likely to be a complex combination of genetic, biological, environmental and psychosocial factors
Nothing is worse than feeling that no one cares or that you have been forgotten. Within our own corps, there are many who feel this kind of loneliness or depression. Something as simple as receiving a personalized note or card can lift someone’s spirits more than we know. Letting them know that they are thought of, loved and cared for is so important.
In Matthew, chapter 25, Jesus explains that we need to step up and do something. We can show mercy, which Merriam–Webster Dictionary defines as “compassionate treatment of those in distress.” Within these verses of scripture, Jesus talks about six important acts of mercy: food, drink, hospitality, clothing, nursing care and visitation. Verse 34 declares, “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 creation of the world.’” Everyone can show mercy. You don’t need to be rich to offer a bottle of water to someone standing on the street corner. You don’t need to have a special medical degree to hand someone a scarf or hat during the cold winter. You don’t have to be abundantly articulate to send someone a simple note of encouragement. You just need to step up and do it.
Jesus explains in verse 40, “I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these My brothers and sisters, you were doing it to Me!” In other words, everyone is important because we are all His children. Everyone is worthy. Everyone is loved—so loved that He died for every one. It is our responsibility to help pass along that love.
Thank you for loving me unconditionally. Thank you for putting people in my path who helped me and showed Your love to me. Help me to remember those who are less fortunate, those who may be shut–in, those who may feel forgotten. Help me to show Your mercy. Allow me to shine Your light and show them Your abundant love. I pray this in your precious name, Jesus.