My husband and I have been talking and planning a day like today for a really long time. From the moment my oldest son was born, we started talking about doing this as a family. Well, that day was finally here.
Living in the greatest country in the world comes with so many blessings, but it can also make us insensitive, non empathetic, self-centered, selfish, and oblivious to need. We can look to our right and to our left and constantly compare ourselves, our children, our houses, our entire lives to someone who seems more “successful” and in the process live solely for ourselves. I have to share with you a sermon I heard recently on YouTube. (Link here) A man named Francis Chan starts talking, and pretty much touches almost every single area I’ve been feeling discouraged, let down, confused and even tired about. The biggest thing I took away from it is, don’t plan for tomorrow, plan for eternity. It turned my whole world upside down, in the best way possible. I am not endorsing him in any way, all I’m sharing is my own personal experience. I know it was the Holy Spirit speaking to my heart. The only way for true change or revelation to come is through the power of the Holy Spirit. So please, read your Bible, pray and seek His guidance.
My husband and I started talking and praying about it together and we are so excited for the change and freedom it has brought us. It is too much to address in one blog, but I am sure I will be sharing bits and pieces as I walk in His guidance.
Today I wanted to share about our Serve Someone Sunday. Like I said before, we have been planning this for a very long time. We have four children, and at one point we had three boys in four years. Life was pretty busy and all about the kids. But as they grow we see more and more the need to serve others and live for someone other than ourselves. We have tried to serve with our kids before but it has been just a few times, not enough. We have started praying and reading the scripture and feel that God is calling to serve now, not tomorrow when the kids are a “little” bigger, or maybe if we could leave a few at home it might be a “little” easier. It might take a “little” effort, but it is doable! God will equip us and He will lead us. We have also tried to serve before and have gotten turned down because we have children. It is always a liability for someone if children are involved. And then we wonder why our children aren’t serving? Well for once, we are so business oriented. We can’t even serve someone without a legal paper that says we can. Hahaha! It can be so discouraging and even exhausting. So, we decided to go to the streets, where the real need is and where help won’t be turned down.
I had planned to bake myself but I couldn’t make it happen. So we headed to Walmart and bought all the donuts we found. We bought the last 10 boxes, that was 120 donuts. We also picked up 120 orange juices and headed home to put the baby to nap. While she napped, we wrapped each donut individually and attached a small note on them. Jesus Heals, Jesus Gives Hope, Jesus Loves You! My two oldest sons helped while the two little ones napped. When they woke up we packed our car and headed to downtown Dallas. We actually tried to go to a shelter first but they weren’t very accommodating. They didn’t want us to be outside passing anything out. They even seemed like we were bothering them. I share this not to talk bad about them (they have their own journey) but because sometimes wanting to do something good isn’t always received the way we think it should be. You might get turned down, they might not get it. But guess what? God called you to do it, don’t doubt your mission because someone doesn’t see it. It wasn’t their job to do it, God called YOU to do it. So, we left a few donuts and juices with them to pass out and left. We drove just down the street and found a street with over 100 people sleeping and living on the street. We parked our car, prayed together and headed to serve them. They were all so thankful. Most of them were hungry and very thirsty. It made perfect sense why we were there. What struck me the most was how sweet the homeless were to our children! They were surprised that we even took our baby. They were so happy to see a baby, the ladies would get so excited. Our kids brought them so much happiness. Our kids were running to serve the people that couldn’t walk to us. We were incredibly blessed to be there, even though we went there to bless them. We handed out candy canes to the kids and talked with them, it was such an amazing experience.
I don’t share this to give my family ANY credit, trust me, I hesitated to even blog about it. I don’t ever want to do anything for God and brag about it. That makes absolutely no sense. I am sharing because I wonder if you, like me, have ever wondered how to help others in need. How to teach your kids that life is not about them and their needs, but want to raise an army that lives for others. If you have ever felt like you can’t really do anything until your kids are older or maybe you think you need an organization to join? Let me tell you, you don’t need anyone other than Jesus to go and do what the Bible has called us to do. If your heart unites with His, then He will lead your heart and make a way. Don’t be discouraged, keep serving and keep telling others about Him!
We saw their needs and got a sense of what is desperately needed. We will continue to go and give them drinks and food but feel a need to get some winter essentials for them. We plan on getting socks and scarfs together to go pass them out as soon as we have enough. Our kids came home and said they couldn’t wait to go back and see them again. The seed that has been planted is worth the “little” effort that it took to go and bless 120 homeless men, women and children. I mean really?! That’s not even a question anymore, it is beyond worth the little effort it took. In comparison to the need, the sacrifice is so small, it doesn’t even seem worth mentioning.
And can I just add that you don’t need a lot of money to help someone. If you plan a little and do a little work, you can take $10 and bless 10 people. It just takes effort. But seriously, how much effort do we put into the things we love? We must learn to LOVE serving, it is a privilege. Our donuts and OJ’s cost $1 per person. Really! The donuts came out to .25 cents a piece and the juice was about .75 cents each. We did it last minute, I know we can do better with more planning. Still, it was really affordable. You can do it for 10 people and pass them out as you see the need, start anywhere! You can’t go wrong when you are trying to serve others. :)
God bless you for your teachable heart. Remember to serve someone this Sunday. I started a hashtag on Instagram #ServeSomeoneSunday. I pray it encourages and prompts others to start being the church God has called us to be.
“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” 1 Peter 4:10