Growing up on the farm, I had the chance to see much of God’s natural order for life. I saw the birth of piglets, calves, colts, kittens, chicks and puppies. Then I saw the way the older took care of the younger. This instinct to care was all programmed into them by God. The word “organic” comes to mind. Organic is a word that means the natural and systematic arrangements of parts and the way they work together.
As the Apostle Paul describes the church, he uses a powerful metaphor of the human body in 1 Corinthians 12. Each part of the body has a function and they all work together to make the body strong and productive. The church is not something you go to on Sundays. The church is you and me. And we all have a vital role to play in building strength and vitality to the entire body.
To my great joy, I have noticed certain people in our church asking me questions like, “How is so-and-so, I haven’t seen them for a while?” or “I haven’t seen this person or that person lately, are they OK?” I believe this is God’s natural design to care for the members of His church. Holy Spirit places a person on your mind, you pray for them and then you contact them, either by email, phone, text, Facebook, etc. This is the natural, organic way that God has designed for His people to bring care for His body.
Our leadership team is in the process of developing an intentional, deliberate and purposeful ministry to care for the people of Heartland Vineyard Church, especially for those who are hospitalized, critically ill, or home-bound. We must have a deliberate approach to caring for the people of our church who are struggling.
But the most effective way for care to take place is when Holy Spirit lays someone on your heart, you pray for them and then you get in touch with them and let them know you care. A simple prayer over the phone is a powerful expression of care.
I can’t overstate this last point and that is, if you are not connected to your church is some way other than Sunday morning attendance, you are leaving yourself vulnerable. The best care given to people in our church happens in the context of Small Groups.
It is our desire that all of you experience the love of God the Father and the love of His church. We are a family. Let’s take care of each other. Listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit.