Food Service

by Ruth M. Blum

"If any of you want to serve me, then follow me. Then you'll be where I am, ready to serve at a moment's notice. The Father will honor and reward anyone who serves me." (John 12:26, The Message)

Background

Just prior to this Scripture passage, the twentieth verse begins, "Now there were some Greeks ..."

These Greeks made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem for the Passover Feast. As non-Jewish people, they were representatives of the Gentile world. They request a meeting with Jesus that is often understood to be a sign of their desire to become disciples. Disciples must be ready to follow, to serve, and to do whatever God requires.

Activity

Arrange to volunteer at a local food pantry. Be sure to verify the age requirements for volunteering.

Begin your time by reading John 12:20-26 together. Plan a tour of the food pantry facility and talk with a regular volunteer or employee who can explain the overall program, requirements, and types of assistance. After completing your volunteer shift, pray and thank God for the many blessings in your life. If the children are too young to volunteer, then perhaps they can just tour the facility and bring some canned goods to donate to the pantry.

Another option is to organize a neighborhood food drive. The local food pantry should be able to indicate the most needed items. While walking around the neighborhood, you can talk about Jesus walking everywhere. Remind the children that one way to follow in Jesus' footsteps" is to serve others. God calls us to be good stewards of our resources, including food. Thousands of children and families die each day throughout the world because they do not have access to nutritious food. By sharing some of the abundance that God has given to us, we become generous givers of God's resources.

Prayer

Lord, stir me from my complacency to notice other people in need. Help me realize that I have been blessed abundantly. I seek to be a good steward of this abundance by sharing it with others. I pray that I may be a true follower of Jesus. Amen.

Ruth M. Blum is an ordained United Methodist Deacon who serves as Associate Pastor of Children and Families at Dove of the Desert United Methodist Church in Glendale, Arizona. You may contact Ruth by e-mail at [email protected].

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