Warmer weather. Rain showers. Sunshine. Blooming flowers. Daylight savings time. Green grass. Baseball! Each of these reminds me that spring is here, winter is over, and summer is just around the corner. It’s also time for me, a Bible study group leader, to encourage my group members to think about investing their time and energy into mission projects that meet people’s needs in our community.
As we serve others, we reflect the heart of our missional God who reached out to us to meet our needs in Christ. The first-century church heard the words of Acts 1:8 that declare, “You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” The early church became a missional church, and today we study and serve together with fellow Christians as a way to encourage one another to “love and good works” (Heb. 10:24).
As my adult Bible study group gathers for study, fellowship, prayer, and ministry, I want to help them focus outwardly. The natural tendency for any group is to turn inward over time. As a group leader, I can lead my people to be on mission this spring by leading them to become engaged in one or more of the following mission projects.
Serve the Elderly. Our communities are full of elderly men and women whose homes are a challenge because they are not easily accessible. Building a wheelchair ramp is a way to meet a practical need felt by many senior adults. (Your city may have a list of people who need this type of construction.) Making and delivering bird feeders to assisted living centers is another project that delights seniors who enjoy feeding and caring for birds. (Senior living centers will often hang the bird feeders in trees so that residents can enjoy them.)
Affirm Public Servants. Men and women who serve our communities as first-responders often place their lives on the line daily, yet with little recognition for their service and bravery. A mission project that affirms public servants is a great way to say “thank you” to these men and women while sharing the love of Christ. Filling goodie bags with healthy snacks, drinks, and small gifts help these public servants know they are appreciated and prayed for by the members of your group. Pick a fire station, police sub-station, or other type of public servant gathering place and adopt it this spring.
Maintain Lawns. Target a neighborhood and go with the necessary equipment to blitz several families’ yards (with their permission, of course!) Spring months are growing months for grass and weeds, and some people (elderly, poor, those recovering from surgery, etc.) may not be able to keep up with the demands of a growing lawn. Picking up branches, mowing inclines, pulling weeds out of flowerbeds, and other projects will be a natural encouragement to homeowners. Spend some time before and after getting to know the people, praying for them, and encouraging them.
Host a Baby Shower for an Unwed Mother. Partner with your local crisis pregnancy center to provide a baby shower for a mom in need. An unplanned pregnancy can be a scary thing, and your group could show the love of Christ to an unwed mother. Be that unexpected blessing that turns her heart toward God!
Use your creativity—there are many more ways for you to be on mission this spring in your community!
Ken Braddy leads a Bible study group at his church. He blogs regularly about Sunday School and groups ministry at kenbraddy.com.
All Scripture quotations are from the Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. You don’t have to choose between accuracy and readability with The Christian Standard Bible (CSB). Find out more at CSBible.com.