On Friday night a group of guys from NewPointe Community Church helped a family move. I was part of a group of 7 guys. Three of them are in my small group (John Troyer, Casey Miller and Darryl Kurtz), one was in my old small group (Todd Kandel and his son Nick) and one I went to Mississippi with in the Fall (Mike Young). Thanks a bunch guys!
I had gotten a call from a lady that needed to move from New Philadelphia to Newcomerstown. She told me she had 5 kids and needed a bigger place. I was also able to give her a little food and introduce her to some other people at church. After calling around this group of guys agreed to help. We had 5 pickups a trailer and a large box truck.
I have helped quite a few people move over the last few years and it is always an interesting experience.
People are often surprised that a group would want to help without expecting anything in return. You also get to know these families, because you are in their homes and get to talk with them as you move.
I came to find out that two families had been living in this small apartment in New Phila. The lady I talked to with her husband and five kids and another woman with two small children. All between the ages of 15 months and 9 years old. All packed in a two bedroom apartment. Both of these families had lived at the homeless shelter for a while before getting into this apartment.
I got to spend some time talking with the second woman with the two children. She shared some of her background and challenges she has faced. As we talked my heart went out to these two families. They are trying, yet have made some bad decisions over the years and are paying the consequences. I try very hard not to be judgemental or critical. I simply listened to her story and tried to encourage her to return to God and build that relationship up again. She is facing a surgery next week to remove a kidney and is already concerned more about her children than herself. I think it helped her just to have someone to talk to about the many things she was facing. I was able to pray with her and we also prayed as a group in their new home in Newcomerstown.
These are real people facing real challenges and I hope our group was able to bless them and turn them toward God. When a church comes together and takes the time to help those less fortunate it send a message to the community. Word has gotten around that we are a generous church. I hope more people that call NewPointe Community Church their home church get involved with service projects.
We plan on following up with them and sending them notes of encouragement and stuff for the children. I don’t know what God is up to, but I want to be available to impact and influence people by serving them and praying with them.
How about you and your small group. When was the last time you helped someone as a group? I know many of our small groups have adopted needy families and are serving them throughout the year. That is real ministry, getting your hands dirty and getting involved in peoples lives. I think that is the kind of stuff Jesus would have been involved in.