Posts filed under ‘Ministry Opportunites’

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?

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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?

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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. 

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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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Yard Sale for India Was Successful Because of You All; Thanks.

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We are grateful and thank the many folks who helped make this yard sale a success. You are part of God’s awesome work!  Photo Credit: Alaine Callen

Even though our yard sale happened on a HOT day (106 degrees), we had lots of traffic. We also had plenty of stuff, about 12 tables full. We started at 6am and by 1:30pm everything was cleared away (thanks to several trips to the Goodwill).

The purpose of this sale was to fundraise for our trip to India. Read more about this here and here. As we shared our purpose with folks at the yard sale, many were generous.

One lady even changed her mind about what she was going to pay us. Her first thought was to give us $20 for a $9 purchase = Generous!

BUT, there’s more to this story. I took the purchase to her car and she said, “I think God is leading me to do something different. I believe He wants me to give you this.”

Imagine my shock and awe as a $100 bill was put into my hand!!!

(God speaking) “The people you live among will see how awesome is the work that I , the LORD, will do for you” (Exodus 34:10).

God did do an awesome work. We made a little over $800 at the yard sale on Saturday. . . . I KNOW that HE will provide the rest of the money that each of us needs.

Thanks, also, for being part of this awesome story about the India trip. We cannot do it alone. Our victories are your victories. Our blessings are your blessings. Thanks for your encouragement, help, donations, and prayers.

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1st Quarter Review of 55th Birthday Yearlong Plan: Collect 55 OCC Boxes

There are about 20 weeks until it’s time to turn in Operation Christmas Child boxes. That seems soon, right?

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What’s in your cupboard? Some of mine are full of Operation Christmas Child Boxes.

My goal is to collect 55 boxes and shipping fee for each box by the November 2013 deadline. Right now I have 19 boxes. 10 for boys and 9 for girls.

There are 3 age ranges to buy for: 2-4, 5-9, and 10-14. From what I’ve read the most popular group to buy for is the 5-9 year old group. So I’ve been concentrating on the 2-4 age group and most especially the 10-14 year old group.

During this next quarter I am going to collect enough stuff for 15 boxes for the oldest group: 10-14 year-olds.

Several folks have asked if they could help me with this endeavor – YOU BET!!!!! Below is a list of items I’ll be collecting. This list is geared toward the 10-14 year olds.

The recommendation is to put at last one thing into the box from each of the following categories:

HYGIENE ITEMS

  • Bar Soap (MILD) and bagged to keep smell from getting into candy
  • Comb or Brush
  • Deodorant
  • Feminine Hygiene
  • Grooming Supplies: good quality – nail clippers, tweezers, emery boards
  • Hair Accessories: ribbon, larger hair clips, elastics
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste – make sure it isn’t expired
  • Washcloth

SCHOOL ITEMS

  • Blank cards for writing notes to friends/family
  • Crayons/Colored Pencils
  • Eraser(s)
  • More complicated coloring books or sketch pads
  • Paper/Notepad
  • Pens/Pencils
  • Pencil Sharpener
  • Solar Powered Calculator

SOMETHING SPECIALOCC image

  • Fishing Kit: pill bottles with fishing hooks, line, sinkers
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Knitting needles/crochet hook and yarn
  • Sewing Kit: needles, thread, buttons, ribbon, pins, fabric (1 yard), scissors
  • Small Tools: Good Quality – hammer, screwdriver, nails, screws, measuring tape (metric), duct tape, pliers
  • Water Bottle or Cup

SOMETHING TO PLAY WITH

  • Balls, deflated with pumps or beach balls
  • Toy Cars
  • Harmonica
  • Jacks
  • Jewelry or beads to make their own
  • Jump Ropes
  • Legos
  • Marbles
  • Model Kits for the boys
  • More difficult craft kits like cross stitch or embroidery
  • More difficult puzzles
  • Tic Tac Toe
  • Toys like paddle ball, yo-yo, cards or card games, travel games

SOMETHING TO EAT

  • Chewing Gum – double bag the gum
  • Hard Candy & Lollipops – double bag these

SOMETHING TO LOVE

  • Stuffed animal

SOMETHING TO WEAR

  • Flip Flops
  • Gloves/Scarf/Winter Hat
  • Purse/Small Backpack
  • Socks
  • Sunglasses
  • Underwear

OTHER

  • $7.00 Shipping Fee
  • Greeting Card/Note to Child
  • Photo of your family
  • Shoebox – either cardboard or good quality plastic
  • Tote Bag

Your Turn . . .

  • Have you ever packed an Operation Christmas Child Shoebox? If yes, what is your favourite thing to include? Have any buying or packing tips?
  • If you’d like to help with this project, leave a comment or email me.

Related Posts for What to Put in a Box. . . If you make any extra of the following and want to donate here, please do!

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What I Miss Most About My Babies and What This Has To Do With The Church Nursery

Please join our fabulous staff in caring for the little ones in our nursery. You can choose to help in either the 1st or 2nd service.

Please join our fabulous staff in caring for the kiddos in our nursery. You can  help at either the 1st or 2nd service.

The number of children in our Cordova Neighborhood Church Sunday nursery is GROWING. We minister to kiddos from 6 weeks – 2 1/2 years old. These delightful infants and exploring tots need more adults in the room. So I am asking for help from our congregation.

If you are over 18 and can devote one (or more) Sundays a month to helping in this ministry, please contact Pastor Susan. You will be given an application and a background check.

To whet your appetite for working with nursery-aged kiddos, here is my TOP NINE LIST of What I Miss Most from When My Kiddos Were 2 1/2-Years-Old and Younger.

ONE. BELLY LAUGHS & GIGGLES. I feel better after hearing a baby laugh or giggle. These sounds are so contagious and sometimes so unexpected. Who knows why tearing paper cracks up this baby especially since the paper is a job rejection letter. These quadruplets belly laugh at their dad’s silly noises.   I’m laughing too, but not at the dad, but at the babies’ reactions.

TWO. I’M BIGGER. At first babies don’t need correction. But give them a year and the battle starts. But at this age, I can enforce the course of our day. It is tiring and relentless, but since I am bigger, I win (more easily).

THREE. SNUGGLES. Not all little ones are overly affectionate or given to snuggle time. But watch carefully and you can get a snuggle or two a day. And oh, that fills me with love and protective instincts for the young one.

FOUR. NO JUDGMENT. Babies don’t know when I do “it” wrong” no matter what the “it” is. They don’t care about the state of my house . . . . my looks . . . my lack of poise or education . . . or my place in society. They just love me. And even after making a mistake, they still love and accept me.

FIVE. TRUST. The under 2 1/2-years-old crowd trust the adults around them. They trust that I’ll be the best version of me. They trust I know what I am doing – even my first born had that trust. That trust in me made me a better person and parent. I strove to live up to that trust.

SIX. WONDER. Babies seem to be amazed at their perfection and the perfection of those around them. Do you remember watching a baby stare at his/her hand in fascination? It thrills me to have a baby stare into my eyes. It seem like s/he is trying to figure out who this marvelous creation is?

SEVEN. NOT CAMERA SHY. I enjoy taking photos of my family. They don’t always enjoy it back though. However, this age group is “clueless” about running from photographers and will “perform” away.

EIGHT. LEARNER. Infants and toddlers are learning machines. And most of the time they enjoy that process. I enjoy that they enjoy it. And I enjoy being part of the process. Just last week one the nursery girls and I spent 15 minutes playing with a pop up toy exploring, pushing, pulling, and talking about the experience.

NINE. SLEEPING POSTURE. It is so c-u-t-e the way our little ones sleep with their behinds up in the air. It is innocent, unself-conscious, and funny. Do you miss that pose too?

Hey grandparents, aunties, and uncles with older children in your lives, doesn’t reading this Top 9 List bring back happy memories?  Want to re-experience these again? Then contact me today! Leave a comment, I’ll call you.

Your Turn . . .

  1. What would you add to this list so I can make it a Top 10 List? 
  2. Will you sign up today to help in the nursery?

Still need another reason to volunteer? Think that working in the nursery is not ministry? Then go read 10 Reasons Why Involvement in Your Church Nursery is ImportantYou’ll see how being a nursery worker is totally important. And COOL.

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