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Name: Linda

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Thursday, August 28, 2008
It's the Little Things
They were new in town and looking for a church. The important thing was to find a church with a vital youth ministry. They found just the church they were looking for and on a wednesday evening they walked into the church twenty minutes early - eager to meet the youth pastor. The Mom stood quietly in the entrance hall with her five children, aged four through sixteen, grouped closely around her.

People began to file into the church building. They walked past the little group without speaking a word. Quietly they stood there as the youth pastor himself walked in. Not a word. He walked past them seven times and never acknowledged them. Slowly the mother turned away and led her children back to their car. They will never return to that church again.

That Mom was my daughter-in-law and those precious children my grandchildren. When she told me about their experience, my heart just hurt. I know what special people they are - what wonderful gifts they would bring to that church. I know how sad and disappointed the kids were.

I thought about the times when I have been too timid to welcome someone I know is new - to step out of my comfort zone. I will never do that again. I want to remember that while it is important to serve the Lord in what we consider to be "big" ways, it is also very important to serve Him in small ways. A smile, a word of welcome, time to listen to someone else's story, a note of encouragement or a telephone call.

"...Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me." Matt. 25:40

We are not all called to positions of leadership - or those areas of service where the things we do for Christ are seen by many. Some of us are called to quietly serve in ways that will never be noticed by great groups of people and never recieve great acclaim here on earth. However, no little act of service we perform in obedience to the leading of His Spirit goes unnoticed by Him. No little act of service is of less importance. What matters is the condition of our hearts - what motivates us. Little deeds done with a pure heart of love are mighty deeds in the eyes of the One who gave everything for us.

Blessings,
 
  posted at 3:12 PM
  9 comments



9 Comments:
At 4:17 PM, Blogger Diane@Diane's Place said...

I'm sad for your family, and sad for that church's loss of the gifts your family would bring to it. There's another church out there that needs them, and they need that church. I pray they find it soon, find welcome and acceptance, and get to work.

That wouldn't have happened at my church. We're blessed to have a loving, welcoming, friendly church. And I am very thankful to be a part of it.

Great illustration, Linda. :o)

Love and hugs,

Diane

 
At 6:28 PM, Blogger PEA said...

Oh Linda, how sad that even the youth pastor didn't acknowledge them! I don't blame your daughter for deciding not to go to that church anymore. It's the church's lost, not theirs. I do hope they are able to find one that will welcome them with open arms! xoxo

 
At 12:10 AM, Blogger Sioux said...

You know, in our parish, we experienced that in that we noticed many people did not welcome newcomers, so we slowly nurtured the oldcomers until they slowly began to get out of the comfort zone, and welcome the new ones, too, and now, there's sort of a rush to see who can say hello first. Sometimes it just takes a lot of courage to allow newcomers into where we feel safe.

I am so sorry your family experienced this, and I pray they have a better experience the next time.

Lovingly...sioux

 
At 1:47 AM, Blogger Linds said...

How sad, Linda. What a waste. Thankfully, it is different at our church, where everyone talks to everyone so much that the vicar has to yell when the service is starting!

 
At 10:56 AM, Blogger Angela said...

I amn so sorry
I hope and pray they will find a new spiritual home soon.
blessings, Angela xx

 
At 5:46 PM, Blogger Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

Having moved many times following my husband's career, we have had that happen more times than not.

It truly is a sad commentary on today's church.

 
At 7:44 AM, Blogger Sandi said...

It is sad for your family but that is common in churches. I've seen it and that is why I will not attend a new church unless I met someone first. The hurt lingers.

 
At 11:11 PM, Blogger Amy said...

I'm so glad you posted about this subject. 5 years ago when we moved to our town we attended a church 5 mins from us and had the same thing happen to us. Not one person said hello, spoke to us or smiled. I came away from there crying and vowed to my husband Í'd never go back but we did and apparently they haven't changed there since...sad!

 
At 2:19 PM, Blogger Gigi said...

Oh - my heart just hurts for your daughter and grandchildren. I pray that the Lord will lead them to and settle them quickly into their new church home. How sad that some churches just do not "get" that WE are the Body...

 

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