Wednesday is our women's Bible study morning. We all love Wednesday mornings for different reasons: two hours of childcare, coffee, snacks, girlfriend time, and of course, learning from God's Word together.
Yesterday, a guest speaker shared about the ministry she launched in women's prisons. The discussion in our group centred around the question, What can we do to help free people from their prisons? and in particular, How does this look for mothers with many small children?
Here are a few ideas we shared:
* Take two minutes longer in conversation with someone. Move just a tiny bit beyond typical small talk so that the person you're talking with gets the sense that you really do want to know how they are. This doesn't count only for friends, but strangers - the grocery clerk checking through your groceries, the person in line with you at Tim Horton's or Starbucks, the unusual man who stops to chat for no apparent reason...
* Send a card. In the mail. It's a simple as that - think of someone, write a card, pop it in the mail. I mean, don't you get just a little bit happy when you receive mail that's not a bill?
* Deliver a meal. Some people do this for new moms or when there's a family death, but meals can be offered for all sorts of occasions (or for no reason at all). Moving, sick kids, hubby away for a long time - these are all great excuses to drop off dinner for someone.
Don't cook? Yeah, me neither. But $10 for a frozen lasagna and a bag of caesar salad isn't too hard to come by.
* Invite someone over for coffee and a visit. The fact is, being a mom can sometimes be a lonely gig. Nothing lifts the spirits as well as simply getting out of the house! So invite that other mom you've met at church or the kids' school, the mom down the street, whoever. (You can also invite non-moms, of course! But if you've got preschoolers, make sure you warn her in advance. *wink*)
* Make a phone call or send an email to someone when you think of them. Say, "I was just thinking of you..."
There are a million things we can do as "ministry" that don't require us to take time off work, find childcare, teach Bible studies, or visit prisons. It seems that we've run out of excuses. Our group challenged each other, and I'd like to extend that challenge to you...
This week, reach out to someone in friendship and encouragement. You can use one of the ideas we came up with as a group, or something completely different. And then, I hope you'll come back to share what you did. That way we can spur one another on as we minister from where we're at.
I'll share what I did in the comments...