When Serving is Scary...

I've been interested in helping the poor and homeless for a few years. 
And it always feels weird to say - like it's a hobby or something. 

But God has been growing my heart in this area. 

So I waited for opportunity to get involved - more than just send money, exchange letters and pray. I wanted to get right into someone's life. Make contact. Get personal. And, I wanted my children to be involved to; to want to help and serve. 

Then it happened. A local community outreach program offered us a serving spot that the kids and I were excited to jump at. We'd be the only people in the 'office' where patrons could come and receive food, blankets, toiletries, etc. The kids were excited. I was too. 

And I was terrified. 

This could hurt. 
Am I really chasing after one-sided relationships here? 
         Will I be taken advantage of emotionally?  
 ...I'm not sure I can give that much of me...

And I'm faced with letting go. And suddenly it's not about outreach, but all relationships. All the people I expect to somehow fill a need they were never built for. 

Parenting my kids is about their training, not my convenience. 
I expect my husband, parents, family, friends, pastor and neighbors to somehow meet each need and want. Why?

Time to open hands and release the grip on what I think I need. 

But I clench, Resent invisibility. What about me? 

And I see the training; the triangle. 

Invest in another - meet their needs. 
My needs will be filled by Christ; not another. 
And hopefully the triangle completes
with their turning to Christ. 

It's complete
and it's opposite
of anything I'd have thought up

... sounds right to me.


The Unknowngnome said...

It's right. :)

From The Heart Online said...


Marianne said...

there is no greater satisfaction than crawling out of one's comfort zone and opening one's heart and mind to those that believe their are hopeless. You and your childrehh will be blessed by the experience.

Leona Friesen said...

i really enjoy reading this and your wedsite is really uplifting keep up the good work God Bless you

From The Heart Online said...

@ Marianne: I look forward to the training, the growth, the journey God has prepared for us. Funny... when we let go of our demands to be satisfied, is precisely when God satisfies. He is enough :)

@ Leona: Thanks for reading! (and commenting - good to see you!) I'm glad you're uplifted. God is good!

Kristin Bridgman said...

Yes, Bravo! God led me to start a blanket ministry for the homeless in my community three years ago... scary! I did it and it has grown SO much. They stole my heart and I am now writing a book with their stories and my thoughts. I share some of these on my blog at www.ponderingsbykris.blogspot.com
You can type the word "homeless"in my search bar if you would like to see some of them. I promise, this is not a plug, I just wanted to share that I completely understand what you wrote. . .open the hands, release, invest...receive more blessings than you ever thought possible:)
Bless you!

kd sullivan said...

Wonderful! Would you consider writing a blog post about this for my 2nd blog What In The World R U Doing 4 Christ's Sake? I would love to include this story!! I like to post on Fridays. You can e-mail me at journeytoepiphany at gmail dot com.

From The Heart Online said...

Thanks Kd - I'd love to! Messaged you :)