Ministry WITH the Poor
Scriptures, Reflections, & Prayers for Faith UMC’s Mission & Vision
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to (with) the poor…” Luke 4:18
Written by Paulette Baker,
Faith UMC Lay Leader, Stephen Minister, Camp Read-A-Lot Coordinator
I had just returned home from the Sensory Sensitive service at church on the day before Easter. As I was standing in my kitchen, I happened to glance at a window on my porch. The sunlight had cast a perfect cross on the window panes. How fortunate I felt to be in that exact spot at that exact time. No coincidence, I’m sure. There are so many signs of God’s love surrounding us, and this one gave me peace and reassurance. As I reflected on this incident, I thought of how easy it is for us to share a sign of God’s love with others. A simple act of kindness—a random act of kindness—may easily be interpreted by another as an act of love. We can all reflect on times when such an act made a huge impact on us. We all have the power to pass this on to others.
Being kind to family is natural. Being kind to friends can be a necessity. Being kind to colleagues at work may be an attempt to look smart and witty. But, being kind to strangers is an act that will set you apart from every other person because it shows that you have a malice-free heart.
Don’t ever underestimate the power of simple acts of kindness. It won a frail old lady named Mother Teresa the Nobel Peace prize. It armed a monk named Dalai Lama the support to fight for the freedom of a nation. Don’t mistake people who are always kind as fragile or weak. Kindness is actually a mark of acute inner strength…the mark of a person who will go to any lengths.
It takes a big heart and a brave soul to drive someone’s troubles away. Everyone promises to offer help tomorrow, but very few can step forward to help today. Those who dare to act right now, rather than later, know the real meaning of kindness.
Just like how a single stone can create many ripples in calm waters, your act of kindness can have a ripple effect on someone’s life. There is no such thing as big or small when it comes to measuring kindness. Even in the slightest doses it can bring about joy and happiness.
I have made the butterfly a sign or symbol for me…to serve as a reminder that, above all else, we should always try to be kind. May you do the same.
March Scripture Focus: “As I have loved you, so you must love one another, then everyone will know that you are my disciples.” (John 13: 34-35)
Prayer: Heavenly Father… Allow us to serve others with a joyful heart; never keeping score; always giving and never expecting to receive. Allow us to give of our talents and our goods, to give of our time and energy, to give of our hearts and our souls. Help us understand the needs of others, never criticizing, never demeaning, never scolding and never condemning nor judging. Lord, you have been so gracious to us, always loving, forgiving and restoring; never gloating over our defeat, even when we are wrong. Father, keep a condemning spirit far from our hearts and further from our lips. Allow us to serve others as You serve, with gentleness, compassion, and tenderness, never diminishing the worth of another, choosing to extend mercy to the brokenhearted, like You have repeatedly shown it to us. In Jesus’ name. Amen