4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. – 1 Corinthians 12: 4-6
We’ve spoken a lot about generosity so far this year, and we’ll continue to do so. But I think it’s important that you hear this very clearly on behalf of the Board and other leaders at the Church: Generosity isn’t just about finances.
Yes, money plays a vital role in our operations and mission work of connecting people to life in Jesus. While still vital, let’s maintain a perspective that allows us to see it as one of a variety of ways to worship and display our gratitude. God doesn’t just want one facet of us; He wants all of us – our time, our skills and our resources.
Knowing that, allow me to recommend an excellent way to combine all three: Volunteering.
The great thing about volunteering is that the possibilities are almost boundless. There’s no age limit. There’s no time limit. It can happen within the four walls of the Church, in your own neighborhood, or anywhere in between. It allows you to use a skill you’ve already mastered, or branch out to try something you’ve never done.
Of course, we always have reasons not to do something. Summer’s over. The kids are back in school (congrats, kids!). Work schedules are rough. But what if … we stopped thinking about how we can’t and started thinking about how we can?
Many volunteer opportunities can be a one-time event rather than a recurring commitment. There’s never a shortage of opportunities throughout the year.
Maybe you’re lucky to work for an employer who gives you time off to volunteer each year. You can use it as a method to find solitude and rest. Volunteering is also a great way to bond as a family, lifeGroup, friend group, etc. Remember that meaningful service can actually be fun!
At the heart of all this is the fact that we are reaching out into our communities to serve, to make connections, to strengthen bonds and to become a visible reflection of Christ.
With repetition, we’ll see good, healthy habits form. We see that our view is no longer that we “have to” serve; we now “get to” serve. And with that attitude shift, we can see a culture of generosity form and work its magic throughout our neighborhoods and beyond.
How can you get started? Here are a few ideas:
- The Church has a great list of community partners on our website, along with internal opportunities: https://livelifetogether.com/lifeserve/
- Read the Weekly Bulletin. Items like our work with Leopold Elementary pop up all the time.
- Your workplace may have connections or partnerships to pursue.
- Not every opportunity to volunteer is a formal one! Maybe a neighbor needs help with the lawn. Or someone could use your expertise at woodworking. Or a couple sure could use help watching the kids while they go on their first date in 18 months. You get the idea.
- Remember that line about volunteering being boundless? Get creative!