Putting Hands and Feet to Colossians 1:24

You may have noticed that The Crossing is a rather-large church. If you attend regularly, you have undoubtedly noticed that, at any given time, there are all kinds of activities going on within this community. Classes, family events, occasional opportunities to serve…there never seems to be a lack of activities being publicized.

But did you also know that there exists a sizeable number of people faithfully serving others selflessly, in quiet ways that are most often not seen or publicized?

I’m talking about The Crossing’s Care Ministry. Perhaps you are aware that it exists on some level. Maybe you know that when someone gets sick or has a baby, there are people who step up and prepare meals for the family. You may even know that there are people within the church who are devoted to praying for whatever needs the church body has.

But as the relatively-new (Jan. 2011) coordinator for the nine teams that make up this umbrella ministry, I have found that there are a lot of people in the church community who really don’t know all the ways in which volunteers are daily serving one another and are largely unaware of the availability of help for those in need.

For my next three blog entries, I will share a little information about three of the care teams currently operating at The Crossing under the banner of “Care Ministry” so that readers will have some idea of what all nine teams do by the time I am finished. Today, I’d like to spotlight Funeral Care, the Fix-It Team, and Home Care. (All nine teams are listed at bottom so you can quickly review what all is available.)

  • Funeral Care. Did you know that if your family suffers the death of a loved one, there are people who want to come alongside you and help you through that time of grief in practical ways? The Funeral Care team is led by caring people who would love the opportunity to provide practical support to you as you deal with a loss of this magnitude. Depending on the desires and needs of the family, this team will coordinate needs on the day of the funeral, including preparing the building for the service, providing a meal or food after the service, and house-sitting during the service. They can also make sure a grieving family has meals provided in the days following their loss and is supported through prayer.

  • Fix-It Team. Did you know that we also have a large number of skilled people who have volunteered to use their gifts to help the church body? The Fix-It Team is made up of dozens of talented people, mostly men, who are carpenters, plumbers, electricians and mechanics. This ministry provides help with minor car or home repairs and/or yard maintenance for those people with practical needs that they may not have the skill or ability to perform themselves. Perhaps that’s a single mother who doesn’t know how to unclog her drain. Perhaps that’s a young couple who just had a child and could really be blessed by having some yardwork done for them while they try adjust to life with an infant and sleep interruption. No matter the reason for the need – whether it’s due to a high-stress situation or a season of life that someone is in – there are people who are available to help.

  • Home Care. Did you know that there are people willing to come alongside you and help you in whatever way you need? This ministry provides help for people in highly-relational, very practical ways. The folks on this team, for example, have visited with elderly parents in need of full-time care, giving the daughter who cares for them time to run to the grocery store. They have helped new mothers with housecleaning and laundry, and have lent a helping hand at home when a young mother was hospitalized for an extended time. The caring people on this team are also willing to simply visit or pray with people who want support through a difficult time.

We all go through rough seasons. Every one of us, at one time or another, has had a life event that turned our lives upside-down, whether it’s the joyful birth of a child or the anxiety that comes with losing our job unexpectedly. We’ve also had times in our lives where, for whatever reason, we feel overwhelmed, alone or wish we had six hands. It’s in those times – big and small – when we should be encouraged to look to others in the Body of Christ to help.

One of the ways you and I can bless each other is in selflessly serving on one of these teams, to be sure. But I really believe that we also bless others in a very real way when we let people know about those times when we ourselves are in very real need, and we “allow” people to serve us in those times. It’s hard to do, I know. I have learned this myself over the last several years, and I don’t think I’m alone. Many of us neglect to make our needs known to others because we think we “are being a bother” or are too embarrassed to ask for help, feeling as though we should be more self-reliant. This is simply a subtle form of pride that keeps us from experiencing God’s love through the hands of other fellow believers. God very deliberately did not distribute gifts and abilities evenly to all within the church, so that we might seek Him by opening ourselves up to the help of others. Being the hands and feet of Christ in the lives of others is no more important than allowing others to be His hands and feet for you.

It is my sincere hope that as I share Care Team information via this blog (and others in coming weeks) with all of you, that we might make Paul’s words come to life in each other’s lives more and more at The Crossing:

Colossians 1:24 (ESV)
“Paul’s Ministry to the Church”
Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church.

Additional Care Team Ministries at The Crossing:

  • Hospital Visitation: This team visits individuals in the hospital, providing encouragement and prayer.

  • Meals Ministry: This team provides meals for people during times of high stress or crisis.

  • New Moms Ministry: This team is a support to families with new babies in a variety of practical and relational ways.

  • Prayer Ministry: This team devotes itself to consistently praying with and for the congregation of The Crossing.

  • Single Moms Ministry: This team is a source of practical and relational support to single mothers.

  • Graceful Wait: This team provides support to women and couples through the pain of infertility or loss of a baby through miscarriage, stillbirth or early infant death.

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