Summer Time can be Service Time
Summer time changes a lot of schedules for families. This summer I want to challenge you and your group to take advantage of this and try to notice others, their needs, their hobbies/interests and the opportunity to build relationships with them. Take a few minutes to help someone or encourage someone. There are a variety of fun, creative and exciting ways you can meet your neighbors/groups/organizational leaders and build meaningful relationships with them.
Here are some key ingredients that your group might want to consider. Make a few notes to help focus your thoughts:
-What area of town do you want to focus on? The area you meet in, schools your kids attend, where you shop most, etc:
-Where is the need? Most of us drive to and from work and never notice the needs around us. Pray to see the need in your community. Then try to identify the top 5 needs you see and discuss with neighbors or your group. This will help you discover your groups/neighbors interests and where you are being led to serve.
-Here are questions to consider as your group discusses the options:
-How often will our group need to fill this need? 1, 2 or may be 4 times a year? What about monthly?
-How many people will it take to fill the need? Can our entire group serve or just one deliver what we collect? Maybe your group could combine with another group.
-What skills do we need to fill this need? Be careful and not over commit to something like replacing a roof unless you have the skills and equipment needed.
What are people’s responsibilities? I would encourage someone to take notes on who will do what and when. Getting a list of jobs and dates for them to be completed can help in keeping the community and productivity strong in your group.
And finally, how will we know if we have been successful in meeting this need?
Jesus’ words should be a constant reminder of why we do these things. He said, “That you love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and muscle and intelligence–and that you love your neighbor as well as you do yourself.” Luke 10:27 msg
When you are finished, here are some questions to consider as a group:
How will we share this story? Facebook, blog, twitter, pictures, video? Who will be in charge of sharing the story?
How will sharing this story benefit the community?
How will it benefit our group?
Here are some fun and creative suggestions specifically for your neighborhood:
-Note cards to encourage someone you see doing something well: garden, lawn, painting, parenting, etc. -Throw a party for new neighbors or deliver a basket of fruit or flowers to new neighbors. -Have a movie night on your garage door. The kids can watch the movie with you or you can pool your resources and hire a babysitter. -Create a hanging basket out of construction paper and ribbon. Fill with flowers and hang on neighbors doors in the spring. -Begin an annual Night Out for your community/street. Plan for fun activities for all ages to have fun as well as meet neighbors.