This week, our family got the opportunity to serve together in a community ministry. It was the first time we have volunteered at the local food pantry. We have served together in our church many times, but this was a different kind of service than we have done before.
And the kids did GREAT!
- They helped unload the seven pallets of food and supplies like a boss.
- They walked people through the pantry and helped them choose items.
- They went out in the rain to help people load the food into their vehicles.
- They helped stock shelves, bag items, and anything else that was needed.
Living in a small community, there are not a ton of opportunities to serve the poor the way there would be in a big city, and I think about that a lot. Jesus has called us to care for the poor, orphan and widow and while we donate things to various groups to help as much as we can, I am always on the lookout for ways for us to serve as a family so my children are learning to live out the mandate to love our neighbor and be a servant in a physical way.
At the end of the day, I talked with the kids. Here is what they had to say:
- Anne said she liked seeing people who were unhappy when they came in leaving happy.
- Ty said he liked helping to stock the shelves, and get the carts ready with boxes and bags for the people.
- Anne said she enjoyed helping fill one lady’s vehicle with food.
- Ty said it felt nice to help people who were in need.
- Anne liked that we were serving as a family.
They both said that if our church always has October as the month to volunteer, we should do this every Columbus Day. I love that. I want them to have the heart of servants. I want them to recognize that helping people is the way that we are called to live as followers of Christ.
We are all busy. But that can’t be an excuse for not teaching our children how to care for and serve one another. Even if it isn’t as often as we would like, or it takes work to make it happen, it is worth it.
What are some ways that you have been able to serve others with your family?