Posts filed under ‘Ministry Opportunites’

How Ice Cream is Like Church

#NationalIceCreamDay – Ice cream and church do go together. … In full disclosure, ice cream was eaten in the making of this advertisement.

“Ice cream brings people together.” ~ Doug Ducey

“Summer would not be summer without Ice-cream. Ice-cream is the favorite currency of love.” ~ Puck

“Ice cream is the perfect buffer, because you can do things in a somewhat lighthearted way. Plus, people have an emotional response to ice cream; it’s more than just food. So I think when you combine caring, and eating wonderful food, it’s a very powerful combination.” ~ Jerry Greenfield

We had all kinds of ice cream: Fudgsicles, Firecrackers, Magnums, ice cream sandwiches, It’s It, cups of vanilla and swirl, and Outshine fruit bars to name a few.

#NationalIceCreamDay is on the calendar once a year. For 2017, July 16th is that day. Since that day is a Sunday, CNC celebrated National Ice Cream Day. Why?

  • It brings people together.
  • It is fun.
  • It is cool. (Pun intended.)
  • It really IS A currency of love. (I grew up in a home where food = love.)

I love that we encouraged people to bring a box of their favourite ice cream TO CHURCH. I like that we encouraged folks to take photos and post them on social media with the appropriate hash tag. And I believe that celebrating ice cream is like celebrating church.

  • Church brings people together.
  • Church is cool.
  • People have an emotional response to church. (Love is just one response.)
  • Church is more than a building or a body of people. It is a place full of God’s presence.

This daddy-daughter duo is cool as they celebrate this National Day.

Church and ice cream have other similarities. Going to church, like eating ice cream, can be a bad experience because . . .

  • The people or ingredients could be rotten.
  • The experience of either/both didn’t meet expectations.
  • There is a bad fit.
  • Someone is just not in the mood for the ice cream or church.

And to that last remark I say a resounding, “Hogwash!” I am always in the mood for ice cream (either Breyer’s Natural Vanilla Ice Cream or Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia). And I am always in the mood for church. Well to be more precise, I am always in the mood to savour God’s Presence.

When we are consistently not in the mood to go to church, let’s PRAY and talk with someone. When our church experience tastes rotten, doesn’t fit our expectations, or isn’t a good fit, let’s PRAY and talk with someone, someone wise. It doesn’t have to be that way.

Although church is filled with people who are imperfect (like me) and who do selfish things (like me), church can still be a positive, uplifting, loving time with God and the people there.

You can eat ice cream in the sanctuary, Rudat Hall, or even in the kitchen.

There are so many GREAT churches in my area. There are a lot of great churches in your area, too. Have you prayed about what to look for in a church? Read 5 Reasons I Love My Church.

And I am adding a 6th reason I love my church. We do silly, fun, connecting things like celebrating National Ice Cream Day.

Next year, come join us! Or better yet, celebrate church with us every Sunday. Join us because it is inclusive, cool, loving and a place FULL of God’s Presence.

Messy is a good look when it come to “ice cream” messy.

Your Turn . . . 

  • How did you celebrate National Ice Cream Day?
  • What is your favourite ice cream flavour?
  • In your opinion, how are ice cream and church alike?
  • What are some favourite things about your church?
  • And if your name is Becky, come to CNC this Sunday.
  • Amanda, thanks for this “messy” photo.

Advice from Jerry Greenfield (co-founder of Ben & Jerry’s  Homemade Holdings, Inc..

“You should not be replacing more than one meal a day with ice cream. We do not consider a pint or a tub of ice cream to be a single serving.”

This is advice I may or may not take.

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Ministry Flash Mob Gives Love

Here is some of the “flash mob” crew holding the TAPED SHUT, goody-filled shoeboxes.

The setting . . .

a subway, waiting room, hospital lobby, food court, any local space

Quietly a prepared group of people infiltrate the scene. On an agreed-upon cue, the group starts singing. The crowd, startled at first, begins to enjoy the planned musical numbers. After finishing their last song, the group members flow unnoticed and unhindered into the crowd.

Have you ever wanted to be part of a flash mob? I have for a three reasons.

  1. I like the practice of getting together with a like-minded group to perfect our gift of music.
  2. I like giving to others with no thought of return (on their part).
  3. I like giving others some beauty and a moment of feeling special.

Our 10 member group who went to India in July/August 2013 was part of a flash mob. But our gift wasn’t music; it was filled-to-the-brim, taped-shut-shoeboxes.

Our flash mob was a ministry flash mob.

Nomadic boy clutching his unwieldy shoebox

Our like-minded crew assembled and stuffed the boxes with snacks, hygiene items, school supplies, and toys. Actually it was the younger folks who assembled the 500 boxes. Annie, Andrew, Christina, Jonathon, Kadie, Katey, and Matthew did the hard work while having fun together.

The leadership thought us more mature women (Jenny, Merrily, Tricia and me) needed to go back to our hotel rooms to “stretch our backs.”  We had been involved in running and speaking at two full days of a women’s conference. My mind really wanted to help, but my body was very tired. So I gratefully acquiesced to having a rest.

It was awesome to be part of a team that gave to others without thought of return, without any stipulations.

We passed a box up to a boy in a window

We gave out 500 shoeboxes. We gave to four Buddhist schools, two nomadic tribes (YES, nomadic tribes), to kiddos alongside the road in villages and to four children in the scoop part of a digger-type truck.

What were their reactions?

  • One girl kissed her box
  • One boy cried while hugging the box
  • One mom put her child’s hands around the box. The child SMILED and so did her mom – the child was a blind girl in a wheelchair.
  • We were even mobbed at one point which was a bit scary!
  • One woman who was a teacher walking alongside the ride of a village asked, “Why are you doing this?” Our reply, “Because we LOVE the kids.

I wasn’t asked this question and I don’t normally think/answer quickly, but I hope I would’ve added, “Because Jesus loves your children, the beautiful children of India.”

Aren’t  “Just Because” presents special? In a way, they are more special than Christmas or birthday presents. We gave our mobs a moment of beauty and of feeling special with these “Just Because” presents.

This is one of the schools we visited.

Our intent was to love on the kiddos of northern India, the most poverty-stricken part of India.  Operation Christmas Child does not give out shoeboxes here; at least they didn’t in 2013 and the years before. But because of the generous giving of people (and many from Cordova Neighborhood Church), we were able to give away 500 boxes in a variety of settings over hundreds of miles.

True, there were no religious tracts, tent meetings, or follow-up cards in the boxes. The recipients didn’t know that LINC Ministries and Kashmir Evangelical Fellowship made this drop off happen in the name of Jesus.

  • But I am certain that our prayers will make a difference.
  • I am certain that those who’s hearts are opening to the ONE TRUE GOD will have further contact from those who come in the name of Jesus.
  • I am certain that some who are in our photographs will meet us in heaven.
  • And I am certain that our fearless leader, Leonard Lee, is following God’s plan for ministry in that area.

When we get to Heaven we will find out that the money, time and prayers given made an eternal difference. We were faithful to do what God asked us to do. God will be faithful to the furtherance of His Salvation.

I used to be worried that folks in 3rd world and developing countries wouldn’t have access to the Gospel and to His love. Not any more.

God’s Word and my experience in India have given me hope.

  • Not by might, or power, but by the Spirit. Zechariah 4:6
  • How lovely on the mountains are the feet of them who bring Good News. Isaiah 52:7
  • Your WORD will not return void. Isaiah 55:11

Your Turn . . . 

  1. Have you ever been part of a musical flash mob? Is it as wonderful an experience as I imagine?
  2. If you’ve been part of a shoebox ministry, why do you do it?

Related Resources  . . . 

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CNC Christmas Year Round – Sewing for OCC Boxes

We had lots of gorgeous material to use for our dresses.

Join us as we sew items for our Operation Christmas Child (OCC) boxes.

  • Our current projects are: Cloth pads with bags, pillowcase dresses, small bags and dolls.
  • We meet once a month at Cordova Neighborhood Church, 6:00pm. The dates are as follows: May 19 … June 29 … July 28 … August 25 … September 29 …. October 20.
  • Have questions? Contact Lucy Baptista. Or leave a comment here.

Don’t sew? Don’t want to come out on a Friday night to put together these items?

  • There is a way for you to be involved.
  • We are collecting items for OCC boxes.

THANKS so much to those of you who donated during April.

During May we are collecting assorted items. Drop off at the Church.

  • Marbles, jacks or Legos to fill the small bags we’ve sewed.
  • Brightly coloured cotton material with matching bias tape. 2 yards of material is enough for one pillow case dress and matching doll.
  • Shoe boxes: either empty card board shoe boxes or quality plastic boxes (the size of a shoe box).

Of course you can still drop off non-liquid personal care items: comb, hair brushes, toothbrush with holder, soap with holder, flash light with extra batteries, etc. NO TOOTHPASTE.

Our Facebook group address is as follows: https://www.facebook.com/groups/402694376774970/

Your Turn . . .

  1. Do you participate in OCC?
  2. If you make items for your box(es), what do you make?

Related Resources . . .

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Sending Thanks to a Friend – Gratitude Project

Sometimes life is hard and you need a helmet

Sometimes life is hard and you need a helmet. Sometimes what you need is a friend who is tenacious about over-coming obstacles. That’s why I am smiling today. I have such a friend with an awesome example.

I know some amazing people. These folks are giving, growing, and fun. One such person is doing well at overcoming her past choices. I wrote her the following note . . .

I keep thinking about your recent achievement, 11 years clean – WOW! Thanks so much for your courageous and tenacious example.

The way you’ve held onto God and worked your program gives me great hope.

  • It gives me hope that I can be an over-comer in the area of my eating.
  • It gives me great hope that my family and friends with addiction issues can be over-comers too.

I also appreciate how giving you are of your wisdom and how vulnerable you are regarding your story.

Folks like this woman impact a wide circle of people. Her impact is more than temporal. I believe that she is impacting eternity as well. And I pray and hope that as I grow and give, that my impact is wide and brings others closer to God, too.

I am writing at least 36 letters expressing my gratitude. And I want to pray for them on that day as well. Go here for the original post and list of recipients. I am writing about it here in hopes that it spurs someone on to write their own gratitude letters.

Your Turn . . . Are any of your friends great examples too? Share how their courageous, tenacity impacts you?

Related Posts . . .  

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Sending Thanks to a “Behind the Scenes Person” – Gratitude Project

Without the help of others, I could not do my job well. Today I am saying "Thanks" to a behind-the-scenes person who gets a lot done without others noticing.

Without the help of others, I could not do my job well. Today I am saying “Thanks” to a behind-the-scenes person who gets a lot done without others noticing.

Think about the last BIG project you pulled off. You most likely had a timeline and a to-do list to keep you on time and on task. But you had something else, too.

You had people helping you. And most likely there were LOTS of behind-the-scenes type of people helping you with this project.

I think that behind-the-scenes people are the unsung heroes of our corporations, non-profits, schools, and even families. When was the last time you thanked one of these unsung heroes?

I am doing that today. I am sending a pretty card with words of appreciation.

I am writing at least 36 letters expressing my gratitude. And I want to pray for them on that day as well. Go here for the original post and list of recipients. I am writing about it here in hopes that it spurs someone on to write their own gratitude letters.

Your Turn . . .

  • When was the last time to sent a thank you card to a behind-the-scenes type of person? How about sending one today?
  • Have you ever received such a card? How did it make you feel?

Related Posts . . .

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Sending Thanks to a Ministry Leader – Gratitude Project

For 4 weeks homeless folks in our area had a safe and warm place to sleep and a dinner meal.

For 4 weeks homeless folks in our area had a safe and warm place to sleep and a dinner meal.                                                               Photo by H Dominique Abed.

A lot of life comes with little recognition. Maybe we get too busy or just assume that that person who did a “good job” knows how we feel. However, they usually don’t and lots of times, burnout and bitterness can result especially in non-profit organizations.

So today I took the opportunity to say “Thanks” to a fellow ministry leader. This gal organized a revolving homeless shelter in our area. 4 churches were involved.

I didn’t have much to do with it, but I heard snippets of what occurred.

  • The gospel was presented to 3 people (in a natural flow of conversation).
  • It is possible that 4 homeless folks will get permanent housing.
  • We had huge volunteer involvement from our church. They felt like they did something worthwhile (which they did) and are looking forward (already) to next year’s shelter.

These are only snippets of the GOOD that occurred.

I am grateful for my friend’s leadership and the fact that this program happened.

  • Because of it lives were impacted (volunteers and homeless people).
  • Because of it many people felt used by God (in a good way) and loved by Him as well.

I sent my friend and co-ministry leader a card with the above thanks.

I am writing at least 36 letters expressing my gratitude. And I want to pray for them on that day as well. Go here for the original post and list of recipients. I am writing about it here in hopes that it spurs someone on to write their own gratitude letters.

Your Turn . . . Is there someone in leadership that you can send a thank you note to? . . . Be specific in your words of praise. 

Related Posts . . . 

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Friday’s Fave Five

FFF daisiesIt is amazing how fast the week goes by. Without deliberate thought, I would miss the blessings. Below are five of my favourite blessings.

1. India dinner Fundraiser. On Saturday we fed about 75 paying customers. Our hope was that everyone would get excited about India. I think that goal was achieved. After expenses we made a little more than $1,000. That in itself was a blessing.

Other blessings included: Consistent help in advertising from a friend (Pam) who also brought in half of the raffle prizes, unexpected help (Gennifer), last-minute raffle entry (from Dan), lovely food (Mike & crew), and beautiful tables (Mark). Another friend (Gillian) helped me to make Chai ice cream and ginger cookies. There are more folks who helped and we are GRATEFUL. This truly was a team event – thanks everyone.

2. Framed photo collages. When my daughter was here she filled 2 (empty of pictures from folks I know) photo collages. One frame has photos from family members. The other frame has photos from my New Zealand trip (including 2 from Hobbiton). These photo collage frames have been on my office wall (empty) for at least a year!

3. Skirts. When we teach and go to church in India, we have to wear skirts.  I don’t wear skirts and so needed to buy some. Have you priced skirts lately? $60 is a common price and they weren’t the style I needed (long and untailored). So I went to a thrift store and found four! What’s even better is that my sister and I can share them. Now she doesn’t have to go shopping. Tops are next – but that’s for next week’s Friday’s Fave Five.

4. Friend time. Friend time included watching Despicable Me 2, eating shawarma and frozen yogurt, and having a chat. It was a refreshing and encouraging time.

Yes, LORD, please.

Yes, LORD, please.

5. Quote to live by. I found this a couple of weeks ago, but I keep referencing it, so needed to share it.

Your Turn . . . 

  • Leave a comment sharing one or more of your favourite blessings from this week.
  • Or write a post and link up at Susanne’s Living to Tell the Story.
  • Leave a comment about one of my faves. It is always encouraging to get a comment! 🙂

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