Car Clinic for Single Moms, partnering with Men’s Club.
Scripture Reference: “Be still and know that I am God! I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world.” (Psalm 46:10 NLT)
This program addresses creative opportunities for service to single moms and their children.
According to a 2018 U.S. census, more than 80% of 11 million single parent families with children under the age of 18 were headed by single mothers. That’s 8,800,000 households. We don’t have to think very long to recall the single mothers we know. Maybe our own mother was a single mother. Maybe you are yourself. Being a mother is a tough job. For mothers who must take on this task alone, who have to be both mother and father to their sons and daughters, there are days that probably feel impossible.
The church is uniquely positioned to provide ministry to the single mothers in our communities. We need to not only be sensitive and understanding but creative and practical as well. Single mothers need a support system and a community to come alongside them. Through this program, both the men’s and women’s ministries can partner to support these single moms.
Ahead of time, reach out to some of the single mothers that might not normally come to the women’s ministries and invite them to attend.
Decorations and Set–Up
Decorations could include racing themed plastic disposable table covers with a simple orange cone in the center with the theme, “Ladies, Start Your Engines.” Use checkered flag napkins and plates. Printed excerpts from a vehicle owner’s manual or car repair book could be used as placemats. Printed road signs attached to sticks could be fun accessories for a photo opportunity.
Activity or Game
- Have the group assemble a Hot Wheels race track and race one another in elimination rounds. Award the winner a prize.
- Purchase plain mugs. Print stickers with car–themed phrases, such as “Pedal to the Metal!” “Driven” or “A Smooth Race Never Made A Skillful Racer”) or car pictures. Adhere the stickers to the mugs. For washable mugs decorate using oil based sharpie pens.
- Ask the women to build a simple model car or put a Lego structure car together with only one hand. This will emphasize the experience of being a single parent, trying to complete a task that would be easier if you had two parents (two hands).
- Have the men’s ministry group assist a single mother with a project she has been unable to accomplish on her own—maybe a home improvement project, raking leaves, or car trouble.
- If there is an opportunity to pair a member from men’s ministries with a single mother and her children as a father figure mentor, try to foster that relationship.
- Take up an offering to provide for a specific needs for one or more single mothers. For example, work clothes, new sneakers for her children, or car repairs.
- Assemble a team of volunteers to help clean the home, do laundry or even watch the kids so the single mom can take a break.
Is Your Check Engine Light On?
One of the most frustrating things can be getting into your car, turning the key in the ignition, only to hear that dreaded ‘bing’ and to see that tiny, orange “check engine” light. You’ve already had battles with your kids over getting up, getting dressed, deciding what they will or won’t wear, what they will or won’t eat. You’ve wrestled them into seatbelts or car seats, all while running through your own to–do list of expectations. All this before you finally make it into the car and turned on the engine. The last thing you need is the flashing neon sign that says there’s trouble. Do we take the car right to the shop or do we ignore the flashing light, hoping it is a mistake and that it will just go away in time?
That’s exactly what life is like sometimes. It is crazy and hectic and overwhelming. We have tasks to complete, things to do and people to take care of, so who has time to take care of themselves? Who has time to relax? Who has time to pray or read their Bible or do devotions? We long for those intimate moments where God speaks to our hearts and we feel His presence so fully. But if we’re honest, we want those experiences on our timetable. We want the warm, loving closeness of God and not the uncomfortable prodding and conviction of the Holy Spirit.
Those moments of discomfort are our check engine light—when our stress level has reached its limit, when we are overworked and overtired, and when we snap at those closest to us. These are the warning signs that our heart needs attention. We can either ignore what God is saying, or we can wake up and give some attention to our current state. Psalm 46:10, NLT says, “Be still and know that I am God! I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world.” Like it or not, God will get our attention. He does it because His love for us is great. God’s desire is for us to rest in Him, to take ourselves to the shop, and to recognize who He is. The Bible is our owner’s manual and the big flashing check engine light is God saying, “I’m right here. Come to Me. Worship Me. Rest in Me.”
However hassled we are, or how tumultuous our lives become, we ignore God’s warning signs to our own peril. Will we pay attention and wait on Him for help? Spending time in His presence is vital to our ability to cope with whatever life sends our way.