Day 30: We’re Called to Serve Together – By Helping Each Other

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Point to Ponder: We’re to carry each others burdens.
Verse to Remember: “You obey the law of Christ when you offer each other a helping hand.” — Galatians 6:2 (CEV)
Question to Consider: Who do you know who needs your help to carry their burdens today?
[Read More] thoughts on Day 30 of Rick Warren’s 40 Days of Community — including Ernie’s cooking!

So, Sandhya and I are making dinner for a member of our small group who was too tired to attend last Sunday. Well, mostly I’m making and delivering it, since Sandhya has to work late. I only know one entre: stuffed peppers, but hopefully that will suffice. I feel a little bad, as we probably wouldn’t have even considered doing it except that we’re required to do a Service Project for our church (or someone in it) this week.

Then again, that person doesn’t care why: they’re glad to get a dinner. And, this is someone in our small group, whom we’re committed to loving (do I? I don’t know, but hopefully this act of service will help). Initially, we were reluctant even to call, fearing we’d be perceived as nosy. But, she seemed really grateful for our interest, and the offer of a meal. So, maybe this act of kindness really is fulfilling the purposes Rick intended…

I must admit — perhaps its my self-reliant Midwestern roots — it feels weird taking a meal for someone when nobody is in the hospital or funeral home. In that context, I appreciated Rick’s statement that our goal is to “help each other face the troubles.” That is, our goal isn’t to help people avoid troubles, or push them to face troubles on their own. Rather, we should stand alongside and behind them, just as Christ does with us, to help them live life to the full.

As usual, Rick does an excellent job of capturing the emotional, intellectual, and volitional aspects of service. I summarize his advice on how to respond to crises as:

* Feel
* Share
* Praise
* Trust
* Listen
* Hope
Sounds good to me — whether as a small group, and individual, or an entire community.

Prayer: Lord, I confess that I’m not very good at either giving or receiving help. I suspect the hardest part is for me to feel — either my own pain or another’s. Though, even if I feel, I rarely share (not counting my journal :-). Help me to actually use my voice to connect with the people around me, that I may bear their burdens, and they mine, as Christ intended. In whose name I pray, Amen.

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