last year before christmas my pastor said, let jesus be the center of your happiness. while he was talking i was creating a bubble chart about things that make me happy, sad, and what made me happy when i was in my 20s. the lord was no where in the list. friends, travel, dating, romance, being in love, money, career all made the list. i decided right then to do what he (my pastor) admonished us to do: serve others.
i’ve been talking about hosting a small group and talking about serving but no action. so i checked the church website and signed up to “serve food” with a local church. i arrived the first saturday in january with my blue HELLO! church t-shirt on and met the liaison to this ministry. she explained the process and gave me a presentation to read about serving families without discrimination. soon after, the program organizer entered the room, asked us to gather in a circle while she shared a few remarks. this is what she said.
“my family lives by Isaiah 58. we believe and have seen the blessing of giving our first fruits to the Lord. the first of our day, of our time, our money. the first saturday of every month is appointed to serve others and in serving we are blessed. my son said, mom i know we are blessed by God because we trust in His law of first fruits.”
she wept as she shared this testimony and her words stung my heart and broke something inside me. hot tears rolled down my cheeks for she was speaking to me. when i signed up to serve, i checked january and february but i knew when she spoke from her heart, that i would return every first saturday that i am able. i joined the grocery shopping parade and filled my cart with beans, rice, spaghetti sauce, milk and didn’t feel the time speed by. two hours later i looked at the tables of packed food boxes waiting for the families who would arrive later in the afternoon to pick up their groceries.
after months of saying “i’m gonna” i finally sought out details on small groups and wouldn’t you know there is a training for small group leaders in january? i signed up for that too. no idea where the Lord is leading but in faith, i will follow.