This morning a group of women from the church and community gathered in the church kitchen to prepare and package homemade food for people in the community. Some are facing surgery, some are having hard times and others are facing the reality that they aren't as young as they once were. In all honesty, it was a little more complicated than I expected and a little more expensive. In the end, we had four types of soup, pork loin dinners, macaroni -n - cheese, Au Gratin potatoes, stuffed chicken shells, meat loaf and gravy, sweet sausage, pancakes, chocolate chip cookies and PTL - enough containers.
Also had a conversation with another minister (who is also an attorney) about end of life issues for those in the congregation who have no family - except for their church family.
We've made the decision to get involved. Inevitably, it will probably lead us into some messy situations. It will force us to make tough decisions, but with God's help, we are committed to sharing the good news of the gospel in whatever form it might take.
While I was reflecting on the morning, I received a phone call from a member of our congregation who is organizing a 5K Walk-Run in memory of her nephew. She called to tell me that it would be OK if I didn't attend the race on Oct. 10. She knew it was important for me to be with my family that day as we gathered to spend a day with my mother's brother who is ailing. It was a gracious and sincere offer of love and friendship.
Are we learning? Yes! God is teaching us the gift of friendship and hospitality! If it seems a little slow, it's because we aren't listening as close as we should.