-The Bible scripture today states,
“God has made many parts for our bodies and has put each part just where he wants it.”
When I think about this for me, The church is the body, and The Breakfast ministry here at Davis St represents Hands of God.
God’s hands are so busy throughout the week and on Sunday mornings here. From making lists of food, to grocery shopping, to food preparation, serving, packing, counting everything from to go boxes, the plastic bags, salt/pepper, hand wrapping utensils and napkins, writing a Bible verse on each take out box, and cleaning up.
Then the meals are given to our community church members.
Each person gets hand sanitizer, a mask, coffee and their meal. Before Covid, we served in and tables were filled with people and the sounds in the Fellowship Hall were of conversations, laughter, and eating. Busy Hands!
Our community members come every Sunday! Some live in extreme conditions including camping out, sleeping on tarps and under tarps, some are in abusive relationships and others struggle with substance abuse but they show up every Sunday and if we happened to miss a Sunday, we are questioned about that the following week. Friendships and trust have developed between all!
I have looked at my hands over the years and watched them change with the weather; they are sometimes puffy/sometimes they’re not, sometimes dirty, sometimes scarred. Sometimes they are very nimble and sometimes they get stuck.
When we were having our breakfast inside, I’ll never forget how difficult it was for some to hold hands during prayers. Even through holding puffy, thin, dirty or scarred hands I often thought of Jesus and how holding hands joined us together in the church.
Now I know I’ve painted mostly a rosy picture. I know this gets a little touchy now because the reality is that some people come only for the food, a place sit down and get out of the cold, heat or rain. There are times when harsh words are spoken or offensive acts happen that hurt and leave marks on the spirit of serving. But, we open our hands and give freely and pray that hearts are touched and lives will be changed.
After my parents died, my brother and I were left to clean out a house of 45 years. The order went like this: things we wanted, we claimed. Things we didn’t went into a yard sale/donation pile. Things that we couldn’t decide on went into Rubbermaid containers for future sorting through.
Since my brother lives in Richmond, I got the task of storing the boxes and I kind of knew this meant I’d be the one to sort through them.
My father was very involved at Davis Street and had quite a collection of Bibles and Bible study guides, hand written devotions saved through the years. All these went into a container. There was one very special treasure that I found when sorting through these materials and that was a hand written letter to God. I could tell the letter was fairly recent because his writing was difficult to read. He had developed an essential/intentional tremor in his last years that made eating embarrassing and writing difficult.
The beginning of this letter is something I have carried with me since I read it.
It started off as: Dear God, I want to thank you for my life and for my church. Now, those last 4 words got my attention and I now know I how much I had taken for granted on so many things in life.
Writing these words with his shaky hands he knew that for him, for you, for our breakfast members and for me, that , the church/ the body is a place of love, a place to share fellowship, a place to share a meal and participate in activities, a place of joy and a place of grace.
It’s a place to understand…
that every challenge or sacrifice is a chance to grow in faith and wisdom.
Those words in his prayer have resonated with me many times as my hands open these doors as I come into this church.
I now know that when Nancy Thompson invited me to join her on Sunday mornings to help with the breakfast ministry that God’s hands were all over this and I find myself now with the same prayer thanking God for this church, the lives it touches, and all the hands that serve and all that receive.
-Lisa Pike Henry-
Are you looking for more but don’t know where to start?
Contact us at Davis Street UMC.
We invite you to join us every Sunday at 11:00 am in our Worship Sactuary at:
606 East Davis Street
Burlington, North Carolina
Join us for a time of praise, prayer, and Christian worship. You can grow at this church, in this community!
We hope to see YOU this weekend!