This last weekend was amazing!
It was our student local mission trip.
25 students between the ages of 12 and 18 gathered at our church on Friday night.
Our night started with group games, free time, worship and food!
We brainstormed as smaller groups about ways we could serve the community around us.
Saturday morning we ate breakfast and headed out as 7 smaller groups to bless the people who live in our neighborhoods, Here's what was accomplished:
- 100 Gatorade's were given out to fisherman, families, and people at local parks
- A single lady in poor health had a face lift done on her house she is getting ready to sell. Old bushes dug up, new ones planted, lawn mowed.
- The local nursing home had 8 visitors who handed out flowers and sang Happy Birthday to one of the residents.
- Every staff working at the local hospital on Saturday was given a thank you card.
- The cafeteria at the hospital got all it's tables cleaned and the patrons got full service drink refills and tray clean up.
- All the hospital rooms with people in them were given flowers.
- Sick people with no visitors had a few that day!
- Two local parks got their bathrooms cleaned.
- 2 local homeless people were given a fresh homemade lunch.
- 3 families in our area with several children were given gift certificates to Old Navy in the amounts of $110, $110 and $135.
- Grandparents struggling to raise their grandchildren were blessed with Saturday night dinner!
- A busy family with little children got their lawn mowed and weeded for free!
- School supplies were bought for needy families.
- Fast food resturant patrons at 3 local places got full service table service and the tables all got wiped down!
This is just part of what I could remember.
How cool is all of that! With busy lives and school just around the corner these students could have done lots of other things, instead they gave up their Saturday and with $50 per group and a little brain using they touched the lives of hundreds of people right in their own back yard.
The thought behind this local trip was that we as adults and students will take a week out of our schedule to travel to neighborhoods far from home and serve them. We pounded nails in New Orleans, painted decks in Waveland, fed the homeless in Detroit and loved on the children who raise themselves in the projects of area code 313; but the question was what are we doing right here?
We've gotta take care of our neighborhoods, our community. If we don't care for those around us who will? If we'll spend hundreds on ourselves, hours for our own pleasure what is 1 day? or even 1 week?
After getting sweaty and wet, smelly and bruised I walked away this weekend thinking I should do more. I sit here in front of my computer with my fridge full of food, I search for the best internet deal on t-shirts or fabric, but what about my neighbors? What could I do to help them out?
In October it will be Make a Difference Day. If you don't have anything planned that weekend, or even if you do, I'd encourage you to think about what you could do to make a difference in your community; or if you're gone or have plans that day think about what you could do where you'll be to make a difference, to pay it forward, to think of someone else above yourself.
If you do it, you'll never regret it- I promise.
As for us we're looking at this weekend and thinking of planning another student local mission- we've only touched the tip of the ice berg on this one!
The kids are getting it, they're catching the fire!