When our Neighborhood Bible Study celebrated its 20th year last month, I remembered our tenuous beginnings. I shared with our nearly 50 members how I was challenged to begin an NBS in the neighborhood, but really had no desire to step out. One of our members said to me later, “Jan, what if you had said ‘No!’ Think about all we would have missed!”
“A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.” Washington Irving
The sweet young homeless girl came up to us and said, “This is the best Easter I’ve ever had!” We were blessed with these precious words when our Neighborhood Bible Study served 70 children and their parents living in a homeless facility just a few miles from where we live. God took us there on Good Friday, to teach us what we are studying in Paul’s letter to the Colossians, “as His chosen people we are to clothe ourselves with compassion and kindness, and bear with each other.” I didn’t realize it at the time, but as a good teacher sometimes does, God was taking us on a field trip and allowing us to experience His teaching on a practical level, transforming our hearts and lives. And at the same time, He was loving these families in hard places through us. I love it that our Bible Study can impact not only our neighborhood, but our community as well.
Did you know 70% of your unchurched friends, neighbors, and family would go to church if someone they knew invited them? Take a few moments and write down ten people that qualify with these criteria: 1. You know them, 2. They don’t attend or go to church.