Thursday, July 28, 2011

Open Heart Open Home - Chapters 9 and 10

I was unable to post yesterday because I had to be with one of my daughters away from home during an emergency.  So I am going to link to this post at The Common Room today.  Chapter 9 is about making your church family feel like "family".  We have always been close to others in the congregations we attended.  At the church we attend now, we usually have several children who come to church without adult family.They often sit with us in our pew.  When I was a child, I went to church on a bus, and sat with other people's families.  So I guess it is important to me that children in a similar situation feel invited, included, wanted, and important.  One little girl always sits with us, because she loves my Daughter #1.  The other children come and go, week to week.  One of the girls sits between my husband and I quite a bit! 

When there are covered dish meals, we always try to take plenty to share, and invite others to stay and eat with us.  We also bring dishes to share with older members during the holidays.

When my girls were small, I had a card ministry of sorts.  I sent greeting cards to everyone who needed one.  Birthdays, anniversaries, visitors, get well, etc.  People commented that they always knew they would get a card from us.  This was something that I could do at home with three babies. That and pray.  When the girls were a little older, I would let them decorate the cards, and I would do the writing inside.  This was pretty popular with everyone.  We kept a white board in our kitchen.  If the girls heard of someone who needed prayer, they would tell me and we would write them on our white board prayer list.  The girls were very good about remember people who needed prayers.

Once a year or so, we would have a prayer night at our home for teens, or a picnic in the fall on our farm.  I tried to do "social" type events at our home, because Pappy isn't a believer, and I didn't want him to be uncomfortable.  He has met a lot of our church members this way over the years.

We have taken meals to sick and shut- ins, driven people to doctor appointments, visited the elderly, changed surgical dressings, taken people to the grocery store, sung at funerals, and I'm sure there are other ways we have let the members of our church congregation know we view them as family. 

Now my girls are grown, and my Grandboy goes with us to serve others. 

The question I always wonder about is, do the church members view us as "family"?

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