Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ Matthew 25:34-36 (NIV)
For many years, our church has hosted a missions fair to help members learn of places that they can volunteer. Last year, so many ministries were invited and so many people attended that the gym was packed. This year, we moved the fair to our county fairgrounds and instead of it being an event for just our church, we opened it up to all churches of all denominations in our area. Over 100 ministries came. Some were Christian, some not religious at all, but they all had something in common, they need volunteers. From local homeless shelters and crisis pregnancy centers to international missions organizations, we learned of places we could serve. I was manning a table for our Pack-A-Sack ministry that packs food for children to eat on the weekend when they do not get breakfast and lunch at school, but another woman was helping me so I had the opportunity to walk around and see who else was there. Some of my favorites include Heifer International where you can buy a cow, goat, pig, sheep or beehive to be sent to a family somewhere in the world. They had very cute rabbits and goats on display, and the volunteer working their table was dressed like a honeybee! Just for Girls Academy, a charter school for girls, where we deliver sacks of food each week had a booth. Someday, when I no longer work forty hours a week, I am going to volunteer there. Several organizations that train and support foster parents recruited volunteers, as did ministries that teach children soccer and basketball. The homeless coalition offered a craft for children, United Way invited people to make cards for those in need, and Hope Seeds gave people the chance to package seeds that will be sent around the world. But, my favorite was the Orphans Heart booth where I got to see pictures and a movie of my little kids in Guatemala, and talk to one of their staff about past mission trips and future ones. Two weeks from today I will be back in Guatemala, but this trip will be different for me, after five visits I am finally comfortable and know the routine, but I am about to be stretched again. Since my first trip, I have said, I will work anywhere but with the babies. Now, I chose to work with Nanny Christy. Well, they have moved Nanny Christy from my darling little chicks over to the babies! What a dilemma! And if you read my blog post about life goals a few weeks ago, you know I want to go on a mission trip to every Orphan’s Heart ministry site. Today, I was offered the opportunity to go to Uganda in November! That’s a lot to think about and pray about. In the meantime, I will keep feeding children and pregnant women in our community and abroad and be grateful for the many blessings I have been given to share with others.