Written by Tangela Linn
Impact Day was a first for our church and to be honest I was nervous. I was honestly nervous that our congregation would not grab onto the idea, as we have struggled with outreach efforts in the past. To begin with, it was a Saturday morning from 9AM to 12PM. That eliminated the ability to sleep in or the ability to forage yard sales depending on which end of the spectrum you preferred.
Deciding ways to impact your community is surprisingly difficult. It forces you to reach outside of yourself and say “Who lives in my area?” and “What does this area REALLY need?” We decided to reach out in three forms. One group of ladies went to a local nursing home and painted fingernails for a group of ladies there. Another group worked to beautify two of our local parks by picking up litter and cleaning their shelters. The last group, which I was a member of, was to hand out water to park goers.
The morning of October 1st was cold. Because of this, my group didn’t give out much water, but we did have an opportunity to fellowship with the runners we found at the park. I had a great conversation with a lady, who wouldn’t take my cold water, but did ask me what we were doing and responded by telling me about her adventures at Nazareth Community Church.
Impact Day taught me a multitude of things. The first, and most important, was a reminder to never doubt the work God is doing. God came into the hearts of our members, causing them to get involved, and allowing us to reach out in an amazing way. The other thing that I learned was that you don’t have to do anything spectacular and over the top to help someone. God’s message of salvation is free and it you don’t have to spend a lot of money to spread it. A bottle of water to a runner is relatively inexpensive compared to the message you are sending. To offer three hours of your morning to clean a park or to paint the fingernails of a lady who may not receive visitors on a regular basis, is completely free, and offers Christ’s message in an unspeakable way. We are reminded that being a Christian is about more than the words of our mouths. Without the synonymous actions to accompany those words, our words are meaningless.
I am so thankful to my church family for stepping up and reaching out. Outreach ministry is an area very close to my heart, and sadly one that is often forgotten. Now that we are tuned into the needs of our area I ask you, what can you do today to spread God’s message? What can you do every day to show God’s love? I’m trying to figure it out for myself. Will you learn with me?
God Bless, Tangela