on serving, giving and caring
he had a kid when he was 15.
and though he knew most guys would have nothing to do with it,
the thought never crossed his mind.
this boy was his and
he would love him, raise him, be a father,
though a child himself.
and so he never went back to school again,
he started working a full time job,
renting an apartment and caring for his child
and the child's mother
soon after remarked that
she wasn't ready to be a mother,
she still wanted to be a child,
and signed over custody to him and
and so he worked,
and cared for his child,
never getting ahead,
never moving up,
as hard as anyone could.
then came the day,
four years later,
when he cried out to the God who is there,
and He answered.
a new creation,
he continued working,
now with a focus on getting to know Him
and he met this girl,
and this girl was me,
and they got married and she became a mom
to his son at 19.
and he worked,
and they worshiped,
but life was hard,
young, married, and
yet they knew the church would be His hands,
and maybe the church could hold them up
until they were able to stand...
and the church was raising money to buy a big building,
sending money overseas to their sent missionaries,
and the church embraced this young family,
showered them with smiles and greetings and
lots of "how are you brother/sister? well,
praise the Lord!"
and the church had a picnic,
and the picnic was at a nearby lake,
and everyone should drive there after church,
and it cost $10 to park.
and were we going, they asked.
and shame faced, but
knowing this was the point, this was how the church was supposed to be,
these were the ways we were supposed to help,
to be Him for each other,
"no. we don't have money for gas,
or the money to pay for parking." and
they looked embarrassed at her,
looked away and said
oh well maybe you can make it to the next one.
and as the church moved closer to purchasing it's building,
he went to a bible study where the pastor spoke of giving,
of caring for the poor and needy,
pastor asked for volunteers to go with him to the soup kitchen and
help feed the hungry once a month.
pastor read scripture on how this was our duty
as followers of Christ
to feed the hungry...
father at 15,
he who dropped out of school to work full time
but couldn't find good work to care for his family
because he had no education,
who was completely devoted to Christ,
who was a leader in the church,
who gave to those in need whenever he could,
and yet who couldn't pay rent this month and
his electricity was close to getting turned off and
there was almost no food in his house to feed his family,
he finally decided to speak up,
to share his need,
and he told them his family didn't have enough food to last
until the next pay day and he was
worried about their house...
and everyone was silent,
all those Christ followers,
all those who had just been so pumped up
to volunteer to feed the hungry,
looked embarrassed and,
the pastor spoke...
"well, um, let's pray for you."
and so they did.
and moved on to the next subject.
when the father and husband rose to leave,
the pastor ran out after him,
something in his hands.
have a steak." and
he handed him a miniscule
i feel sorrow,
in caring for the poor and needy we in the church
often neglect those at home,
and when it comes to those IN the church,
we so often just ignore it.
when need is presented to us,
when it is right in our face,
we can't take it,
we look away,
we will go feed the homeless,
but our brothers and sisters,
we will pray for them.
***this happened years ago, and though i know not all churches would respond in this way,
it gives us something to think about... how do we treat the needy in our church, the needy amongst us,
when their needs are presented to us?***