Our church building sits on a busy road with an elementary school just a block away on the same street. Daily, during the school year, I can watch hundreds of kids walking on the sidewalk to the school in the morning and back home again in the afternoon. Over a decade ago, I got the bright ideal to send some of our church staff over to the school to pass out Vacation Bible School fliers to the students on the sidewalks. Noticing our activities, the school administrators told us to vacate the sidewalk and not to bother the students with our invitations on their way home. The school felt the need to protect the students from any unwanted solicitation. We were disappointed and confused. We had not approached the school again to serve them until this school year.
Last year, our church involved itself in LifeWay’s Transformational Church survey and discovery process. We realized that while we had great fellowship within our church, we were not investing in our community very well. We were failing to be the body of Christ to our neighbors and therefore were not impacting our community so that it would reflect the Kingdom of God. Change was necessary!
Part of our action plan for transformation was to go back to the elementary school across from our church and ask the administrators if we could “adopt them,” meaning…
- We would pray for the teachers by name every day.
- We would survey the teachers to find out what kind of school supplies that they needed in their classrooms. We filled every “wish list” presented to us.
- We would celebrate the teachers’ birthdays and have a teachers appreciation day once a month.
- We would help them in any school events (we have already sponsored Car shows, Spring Carnivals, and field trips).
- We would help families in need within the school with food and clothing.
- We would host a Back-to-School carnival to provide school supplies to families.
The school, the students, and the parents have been amazed that we would care for them. Why should the world that God loves, be surprised and amazed that a church would love on them? Our school had every right to be amazed… we had ignored them for years.
The other day, I went by the school and saw a message on their outside sign that brought tears to my eyes. Without fanfare, the school posted that they were thankful for all that we do for them.
The believers at Lindsay Lane Baptist realize that in comparison to what our Savior has done for us, we have done so little. God is the giver of all things! I am so glad that our “adoption” went through! McCurdy Elementary is God’s gift to us that we might demonstrate the love of Christ!
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