I don’t remember doing any “formal” mission or service projects in my family while I was growing up, but I do remember my parents always on the lookout for people that needed help. For my dad, that often meant picking up a hitchhiker or bringing home a family-less person or couple for a holiday dinner. I remember my mom hiring a housekeeper she didn’t have to have because the woman needed work. Helping others was often a quiet thing, but we knew it was there. An atmosphere of service that apparently got caught.
My sister and I always accompany kids from school on their mission project day. We both enjoy helping others and watching our kids learn to help others. At the ministry where my youngest son and I served today, there is a school for at-risk kids. As we were wrapping up our work time, our boys played a game of basketball with the boys from the school. While the game was in full swing, my brother arrived with his weekly pizza delivery for the school kids’ lunch. That’s what he does to help out. A little thing, but so appreciated and necessary. I didn’t know I’d see him there, although I know he’s been involved in that ministry for years. So the three of us were out serving the Lord by serving others today. And then of course there is our youngest sister, too, who serves full time overseas.
Usually on these mission days I reflect on what it means to minister with my kids and their friends. But today I am overwhelmed by the privilege of serving Christ and others alongside my brother and sisters, even when we’re in different locations. And I’m grateful for a mom and a dad who provided us the opportunity to catch a lifestyle of helping others.