When to Love, When to Evangelize
1. An associate of IHNM first took groceries to a single mother in 1985. Later he paid tuition and gave her pep talks week by week. She needed frequent encouragement to help her "keep going." He never gave up on her. Neither did she give up on herself. Now he and his wife are like family to them. The woman has gotten an associate degree, is married, and her life is normalized because of one man's "extra effort" to exhibit God's love.
2. A church group who found a disabled widow, first did ordinary chores, doing grocery shopping, and little things around her house. One person visited her regularly and reported needs back to the group. Later they took on a major project to re-roof her home. After several months of getting to know her she expressed an interest in going to their church. She was invited to a Sunday School's picnic where she was their guest of honor. It may have been the first time in her life she had received such special attention.
3. A Baptist church in Oklahoma City has trained volunteers to meet people, by appointment, at the church during a two-hour period once a week. When needs are determined to be a dire emergency, the volunteer may make a quick decision to authorize payment of a utility bill, or part of a rent payment. Most cases, however, are taken to the weekly committee meeting for consideration. A good alternative is to go out to the homes of those who have no transportation, or when it would be difficult for them to come to the church.
4. An idea from a church in Florida.