Monday, July 23, 2012

sharing with those you care about

When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality.
  14 Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them.  15 Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep.  16 Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!

Some people are more compassionate than others.  That does not mean that some people are better than others.  We are just wired differently, yet when God gets hold of us, our hearts soften toward the hurt of people.

Years ago I heard Rick Warren say “God never wastes a hurt”.  Since that time I’ve seen this lived out in many ways and through all kinds of people in all kinds of circumstances.  Often pain has become a testimony or encouragement for others who experience the same.  Learning from our hurt will make a difference in their lives.

I’ve got to be honest with you that the last few days have been rather draining.  I am not complaining.  But I have been with some of the people that I dearly love during the time they have been in deep pain.  This is also the time of our biggest outreach of the year in the back2school event.  Meeting the hundreds of people who came through our church Saturday melted my heart. 

Lots of stories were shared.  Lots of kids in need came to register to be part of the event.  A few of them I know, but most of the people might look familiar but I don’t know them.  Several talked about how this was meeting a need in their lives.

Meeting needs is an incredible thing, but why we meet needs is an even bigger issue.  If we help people so we feel better about ourselves or because we are trying to right some wrong we have done, those are the wrong reasons.  God has called us to see our blessings and share them with others.  We are to take the hope He has given to us and share that hope with others.  There is nothing better than sharing with someone who is hurting or in need.

The verses above ring in my head and in my heart.  What a huge blessing it is to serve the people we get to work with.  I’ve seen many lives changed by what God has done in and through them.  I could tell you about Rodney or James, Terri or Kristy, Steve or Greg and many others.  I cannot get enough of their stories of what God has done.

Be ready to help.  Join people where they are.  Share what you have with those who need.  Then step back and let God work.  Sharing life with those you care about will begin to change you and to change others.  There is nothing greater than finding a need and meeting it or finding a hurt and healing it through the grace of God (thanks to Pastor Tommy Barnett for those phrases that continue hold my heart and my actions).

And I have been a constant example of how you can help those in need by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

And don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God.

Students can still register for an extended period of time.  Pass the word that people can call the church at 276-647-8231 to register.
Want to help us?  This next Sunday will be a huge push to raise the $18 per student it costs.  You can help these children by giving and supporting this event.  Volunteers are also needed. Consider giving a gift to help us serve these children.  Click HERE to give online or mail your check to back2school TCF, PO Box 388, Collinsville, VA 24078.  Watch our video HERE.  Thank you for your help!

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happy birthday, Julie

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