Saturday, December 25, 2010

Helping in Some Small Way

I have been extremely proud of our small group and youth group lately, and really, our church as a whole.

We have been trying to live in such a way that brings glory to God. We realize that it is not all about us, but that it is all about God and furthering his kingdom. We are trying to look more outside of ourselves to see the needs of people and to be Jesus to them, even if it is in just some small way.

Our church has been a part of some projects and activities that blessed my life and reminded me of what is really important in this world.

The first project was something we did with our youth group last year. After participating in it last year, we decided as a family to make it an annual tradition. I was proud this year when our 4th and 5th grade classes challenged our church to pack shoe boxes full of toys, school supplies, or hygiene items to send to children all around the world. We did it though Samaritan's Purse whose mission statement is to demonstrate God's love in a tangible way to needy children around the world, and together with the local church worldwide, to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. Last year 8 million children received a shoe box.

Just like last year, the girls chose to pack a box for a girl that was their age. They even used some of their money to help pay for the items. They had a great time picking out all their special treats.

We had a middle school retreat the second weekend in December. I was glad that a large group of middle schoolers signed up to go. We had a great time learning from Wes and the other youth minister, playing some fun games, and hanging out together.

On the ropes course learning to depend on each other for help.

Listening to some instructions. Avery and Abby are ready to participate too.

Zack and Bowen. Zack was two or so when we moved here to Denison.

The second project was going to the Grayson County Shelter here in Denison with our middle school and high school girls. We made cookies to take to them along with some milk. We also brought supplies to make some Christmas crafts. We sang Christmas songs with them and listened to Cina as she read us a Christmas book. I love watching our youth serve and love on others.

Sierra holding her new little friend who was happy to go from one gal to the next.

Working on some crafts together. Poor Abby did not get to join us. She was sick.

This little guy was a character. He kept us laughing and on our toes the whole night!

Every year our church participates in an activity we call Project Christmas. Each small group adopts a family or two to provide Christmas gifts for them. We decided to help Radiant's family. I think I have written about her before. She had brain cancer and is now recovering from several chemo and radiation treatments. She has 3 other siblings that we were also able to bless with clothes and toys. I was so very proud of how much our group donated to help make Christmas a special time for this family who is struggling to make ends meet. We had a fun time picking out everything, and it was special to see their excitement when we delivered our gifts. Our prayer is that this family will see Jesus through our love and actions.

Our small group is also planning to help out another family who is struggling financially due to medical bills. Watching our group respond so quickly and generously to these situations has warmed my heart.

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