Below is part of a letter I received from a participant in SOS: Saturday of Serving. It speaks for itself.
“I had to wait to write to you about the apartments and the “Meet Your Neighbors”. It was so overwhelmingly positive that I had to stew in it for a while. I wanted to fill you in more on the story I had told you about.
In my studies at UALR, I had to go to different elementary schools across the city. One semester, I was in a 3rd grade classroom. In that classroom were the most wonderful children! I made an instant connection with them all and at the end of the semester, I wanted to do something special for each one, but I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t have any money so buying them some sort of token was out. So, I prayed for God to give me an answer and he just simply told me to do what I do best…..write them each an individualized letter. On my last day there, I handed out the letters that I had put in an envelope with each child’s name on it. There was one boy in particular (Travon) who I knew came from a poor family with lots of brothers and sisters. In my letter to him, I tried to do what God tells us to do “build each other up according to their needs”. I told him that I know he will make an excellent role model for his younger siblings. What I did not know was that when that child read my letter, he had tears streaming down his face (the classroom aide told me this later) and when he was through reading it, he shoved it her way so that she could read it too and said “Look what she wrote about me.” That alone was a treasure forever engraved on my heart.
But this past Saturday set it in stone for me. Guess who was there? TRAVON!!! He told me he still has my letter and I was able to meet his mother and some of his brothers and sisters. He also told me that the day I left, his whole class cried! How awesome is that? God has this incredible knack for confirming what we do for Him. He lets us know that yes…..this is the way. This is that narrow road and we are so blessed to follow him where he leads us.
We get so many different wonderful blessings when we go to those apartments. The turn out this time was beyond belief. There was one particular dad who last time sat out at his door and when I asked him if I could bring him a plate, refused. Meanwhile his children were peeking out from the door. This time….that man, his wife and his children were all there eating, playing and mingling with the other adults there. If I even walked in his direction, he would go the opposite way so I made sure that I backed off from him and just let him find out for himself that it was really “no strings attached”. We also got the phone number of one of the ladies who wants a ride to church. Pretty cool! I also asked some of the parents what else they would like to see us do out there and …it was really touching to me because instead of asking for things for themselves, they said they like what we are doing with the kids. They only wanted for their kids. So that is what we will do next time. Something else that we can really see a need for at the apartments is more teenagers going. There were quite a few teens out this past time.
Even though there is a lot of work involved with this ministry, it is worth every second because each time we go, God provides us with a new glimpse of His grace. There is no price tag on things like that.”