Great Puzzle of Hope

God has a calling for us all and when we come together, each doing our own part, the powerful things that happen are truly amazing! It is, as my dear church friends describe, just like a jigsaw puzzle, and we are all pieces that come together beautifully for a common cause to fill in the gaps to complete and make things whole. I like to think of it as God’s great puzzle of hope. This story has been inspired by an outreach effort that began as a thought with one single zip-lock bag, and has blossomed into so many “bags of blessings” for a worthy cause! Read on for today’s inspiring story.

 

My husband and I are dedicated to outreach efforts to help the homeless and those in need living in our surrounding community. One of our sisters in Christ from our church has taken an idea of assembling plastic zip bags filled with some necessities to hand out to folks on the street, and given it to her students as an assignment for a recent school project. She is an awesome teacher, who desires to teach her students a valuable lesson in how to reach out and show love. They have been asked to fill these bags with necessities such as toiletries, hand warmers, gloves, snacks, etc. They have also been encouraged to include brief messages of hope in each bag as well. She calls them “blessing bags,” and it is truly a blessing to see the magnitude of what these children have done. They have collected boxes and boxes of blessing bags during the course of this project assignment.

 

Whenever we can, my husband and I routinely provide a meal for several of our camp friends who do not have a place to call home, nor a roof over their heads. Instead, they live in tents in a secluded area not far from us just off a main highway. It is a daily struggle for them to find food and necessities. At times we have taken them to get clothing or other needed items, as we have felt a calling by God to assist them. It seems that my husband and I are now being Divinely diverted from our normal outreach efforts to expand our thinking on a much broader scale. We are now including the blessing bags in other areas of the community to folks we might never have been able to help without them. It is so amazing how God is opening up doors and opportunities to bless so many more through this wonderful teacher, her students and us. We feel so honored to be a puzzle piece helping to fill gaps in God’s wonderful big puzzle of hope.

 

We also see Divine diversions happening all around us every day. Our sister in Christ has told me that in the past she always thought she knew the path God wanted her to take, but now she and her family are being led to do much more. They have developed a new, strong passion for outreach. It is also very rewarding to hear that they have been inspired by my husband’s efforts. I can’t tell you how wonderful it was to hear that she feels called to raise up a generation of children like my husband, who will realize just what a blessing they can be to families in need. The response to this teacher’s assignment has been amazing. She told me that some of her students made extra bags to keep in their parents’ cars to hand out to homeless or those in need on the street, if and when they may cross paths with them. Some of the parents have told her that they are bringing this idea into their workplaces. What an exciting thing to witness, as we are watching God grow something so small into such a huge outpouring of love filled with so many blessings!

 

If you have ever seen homeless folks in your community and wondered how you could help, think of those thoughts as a “tug” on your heart by the Holy Spirit, encouraging you to get involved. Why not pickup the phone today and call or visit your local municipality. Ask about community centers or churches in your area that have outreach programs you may partner with to assist wherever you can. God is waiting for you to answer His call and be a part of His great puzzle to provide a small ray of hope to someone less fortunate today!

 

2 Thessalonians 1:11

“Wherefore also we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power,”

(Bible, King James Version)

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