ECC Ministry Update – Not So Random

Do you remember the trendy wave a few years back, known at R.A.K.? Random Acts of Kindness. It spurred thoughtful, and beneficial care among many people. Primarily it taught people to not just think of themselves, but to be considerate of others and their lives, their circumstances, and their challenges. People were challenged to show kindness in unexpected, surprising, and generous ways.

Paul, in his letter to Titus, says, 3 At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. 4 But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. 8 This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone. –  (Titus 3:3–8).

Paul takes us back to the great model of kindness found in Jesus Christ. Selfless, compassionate love expressed in kindness is best seen in what Jesus did for us on the cross. It was and still is so necessary to bring change and renewal to lives that are consumed by the ways of the world and in disobedience to God.  Kindness changes things…and people. It brings us closer together and in this season of pandemic can be an expression of great love that some people have rarely experienced.

As you may know my mom and dad are now in assisted living at the Brethren Retirement Community in Greenvile. For the last week and a half , for their safety, the residents have not been able to have visitors and since last Thursday they have been quarantined to there rooms and only allowed to walk out in their hallway. It is a necessary step to help them stay well. On Friday my dad turned 85! While we wanted to spend time together face to face, we instead, with the help of a BRC employee had a surprise video call with my dad to talk with him and celebrate his birthday. This was a new experience for him and he was overwhelmed with emotion and joy as it made his day. It was a simple act that he was still talking about last night in our phone conversation. He also mentioned to me last night, with tears, that he had received multiple letters from individuals in our congregation over the past week. He spoke of how thoughtful and kind they were to him in this time. Yet again, simple acts that have made a very difficult time, a special time in many ways. Personally, let me say how much this has blessed me! Thank you!

As I watch my parents age, God is teaching me that I don’t need to create huge, complex, over the top ways to show kindness to them and others. Most often the simple acts of kindness are more powerful. These acts of kindness make an impact, not because of their grand nature, but because of hearts that seek to show the kindness that was given to us in Jesus Christ.

Tonight we are challenging everyone in the congregation to engage in a night of “Care Cards and Care Calls”. We encourage you to turn off the tv, set aside your to-do list and participate in acts of kindness to at least 3 others through making a “Care Call” or a “Care Card”. This may be a neighbor, a family member, a church family member, or anyone else that the Lord brings to your heart. Use this evening to demonstrate kindness to others. Here’s a few more tips:

  • Pray before you begin and ask the Lord to lay someone’s name on your heart.
  • Write out a prayer in their card and pray over the card as you send it.
  • Join together as a family and make your own cards. (Homemade cards are always extra-special.)
  • With a phone call, ask if their is anything they need or an errand you can run for them.
  • Pray with them over the phone.
  • Ask them how they are doing.
  • Keep it simple and think about how you can express the love of Jesus Christ that has been given to you!

Let’s flood this community with acts of kindness today! Better yet, let’s keep it going as acts of worship to God! I’d love to hear any stories about how you and your family chose to “Share Life, and Share Christ” in this way. Send me an email at dan.denlinger@eatoncommunitychurch.org

Happening This Week

Tuesday, March 31 (7:00-8:00)- Table Talk – Hosted by Pastor Dan. A time to share with one another about life and faith in this season. Link sent out tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 1 (7:00) – “Threads” Bible Study – Hosted by Pastor Josh.                         A time to study God’s Word.  Details and link coming soon. 

Thursday, April 2 – (6:30-7:30) REFIT® – Hosted by Brandie Back. Link coming soon.

Friday, April 3 – Movie Night Ideas & Lessons – Details coming soon.

Sunday, April 5 – Sunday Morning Worship – Access at eatoncommunitychurch.org

Take care of yourself and take care of one another!

Pastor Dan