Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Volunteer: Someone is waiting for you!

Tuesday is a day I volunteer at a local elementary school. I look forward to working with the students each week and to see their progress. Our county is decidedly poor and the children suffer for it in the public school system. Not only are we operating with less funding, but many of our children come from homes where a father is never known.

Every child deserves to have a two parent home. Many would say the "village" will raise a child, but I contend the foundation for everything we are begins at home. Where the father is absent, boys have no role model and girls don't have an idea of the man they would want to marry.

After having been a teacher and volunteer here, I'm convinced that the breakdown of the family is the breakdown of our nation. God has a plan of the order or structure of how a family should be. When His order is disturbed or broken, chaos ensues. All we have to do is take a look at our children to see that.

Prioritizing our lives the way the Bible directs won't eliminate all our problems all the time, but it sure will be much better than the alternatives the world gives us. Marriage between a man and woman is sacred and holy. God has ordained it. Establishing a home with marriage gives a child a much better opportunity for them to see the way God has planned for their future.

I coordinate 2 missions that our church has with 2 local schools. One is an outreach ministry and the other is a ministry called Hand in Hand. Hand in Hand is a ministry of the United Methodist Church nationwide.

The Hand in Hand Project is a direct result of the United Methodist Bishops' Initiative on Children and Poverty and is embraced by The NC Department of Public Instruction. It is a ministry for children and youth that connects communities of faith with schools. It offers us as Christians an opportunity to build solid relationships with our area's children through their school. We as a church can help in addressing the academic, social, and economic needs of our children.

Our church members are encouraged to volunteer with the students in the classroom where needed, to be lunch buddies/mentors, or just to volunteer wherever the school needs us. Clothing, shoes, glasses, food, etc are purchased for children throughout the school year. We also provide for Christmas each year for the schools' neediest. Our men's group, women's group, and church budget funds these 2 missions.

Volunteering is a big part of my life. I receive much more from helping than the recipients receive from me. I feel as though I have "gone throughout the land" sharing God's love when I tutor a child. I have very fond memories of what I've done in the schools and look forward to being involved for years to come.

No matter what our ability level might be, there is a place for us to help.

Plant a seed and see what grows!

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