Mark was walking home from school one day when he noticed that the boy ahead of him had tripped and dropped all the books that he was carrying, along with two sweaters, a baseball bat, a glove and a small tape recorder. Mark bent down and helped the boy pick up the scattered articles. Since they were going the same way, Mark helped to carry some of the things. As they walked along, Mark discovered that the boy’s name was Bill, that he loved video games, baseball, and history, that he was having a lot of trouble with his other subjects and that he had just broken up with his girlfriend.
Mark continued on home after dropping Bill off at his house. They continued to see each other around school, had lunch together once or twice. Both graduated from junior high school. Even though they both went to the same high school, their encounters there were brief and infrequent. Finally the long awaited senior year arrived. Three weeks before graduation, Bill asked mark if they could talk.
Bill reminded him of the day years ago when they had first met. “Did you ever wonder why I was carrying so many things home that day?” asked Bill. “You see, I had cleaned out my locker because I didn’t want to leave a mess for anyone else. I had stored away some of my mother’s sleeping pills and I was going home to commit suicide. But after we spent some time together talking and laughing, I realized that if I killed myself I would have missed that time and any others that would have followed. So you see, Mark, when you stopped and helped me pick up my books that day, you did a lot more. You saved my life.”
Often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word or listening ear. Even the smallest act of kindness and caring has the power to turn a life around.
Matt 10:42 And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is my disciple, I tell you the truth, he will certainly not lose his reward.”
2 Cor 5:20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.
Did You Know?
According to a poll of visitors to a local congregation it was found that:
– 78 % loved being greeted at the end of service by those who sat around them
– 72 % did not want to stand and be recognized during the service
– 70% liked receiving information about the congregation’s activities
– 65% did not want a name tag
So what can we do to encourage visitors?
– Introduce yourself to visitors and guests
– Invite people to Bible class, if they have children- walk them to their class
– Smile at visitors!
– Invite them to lunch to get to know them
– Be a friend. People are looking for a congregation that is friendly
– Pray for the visitors and for the church as a whole.