I want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over, and make up your own mind what you will give. That will protect you against sob stories and arm-twisting. God loves it when the giver delights in the giving.
2 Corinthians 9:7 (The Message)
What could we do to make an impression? What kind of adventure could we have? What action could we take to make a difference?
I have an idea!
For the lesson on Mary, the mother of Jesus, we’d go on a field trip with the teen girls.
We’d each bring a baby gift, then deliver them in person to the women’s homeless shelter. We’d talk to the women, watch them open their gifts, ooh and ahh over their babies. We’d bring them some love from Jesus.
I liked the plan.
Why is there always a but in my adventures?
- But the women’s shelter was slow to return our calls.
- But on Sunday morning the women would be gone, attending chapel services of their own.
- But the staff wouldn’t be available at that time to even give us a quick tour of the facilities.
And then God threw in a but of his own…
- But go anyway!
Don’t worry about seeing them opened; just give My gifts.
So we loaded the girls on the van, weighted down with diapers and baby rattles and onesies.
On the ride over, each girl held a gift. One by one, each prayed for the baby and mother who would be receiving that gift.
- Help the mother who gets this gift see her child as a gift from heaven.
- May this baby bring much joy to his parents, and learn to love Jesus.
- Pour special blessings and extra love on the baby who receives this gift.
- Help this baby to grow up knowing Jesus loves her.
- May this baby receive enough food to eat and enough clothes for warmth this winter.
- Help the mom of this baby learn You can help her have a better life, starting now.
- Please protect this baby to grow into a great man or woman for You.
One by one, though unseen by us, these gifts will be opened.
And one by one, if the Lord so chooses, so will the blessings.
We arrived at the shelter, handed over our gifts to the workers in the lobby, and were thanked generously before heading back to the church building.
It wasn’t quite the grand adventure I had envisioned.
But...perhaps the adventure wasn’t meant for us.
Perhaps the real adventure is meant for her—the mother with no pacifier, no baby socks, no diapers—no hope?—for her baby, then suddenly is showered with just what she needs.
And now, maybe her adventure can really begin….
And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
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2012: My year to...