Sunday, September 12, 2010

A Different Kind of Conference

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi
Credit where credit is due: my pastor posted this photo taken with her cell phone to her Facebook page...there are about 300 ladies in this picture!

Photo credit Leisa Nelson

It really didn't feel like any conference I'd been to before. I think that's largely because the emphasis wasn't so much on what *we* were getting, but what we were *giving*.

Saturday morning we did an outreach. 9 rented school buses were lined up in front of the church when I pulled into the parking lot; I was surprised to find that I suddenly teared up. It was apparent that something was goin' on.

We had groups who went to (mostly) low income neighborhoods and one (the group I was in) went to a nursing home. Our group took gift bags that contained a stuffed animal, a comb or brush and some lotion to the residents of the nursing home; the other groups took reusable grocery bags w/kitchen supplies, rice, potatoes, canned goods and the like and went door-to-door, giving away the filled 'hope totes' and offering prayer.

The stories we heard in the afternoon were amazing. People were touched...not just the folks who received the bags, but all of us who went out. I think this is going to be a part of our women's conference from now on. you remember what I wrote about being prepared for the conference? God stirring my heart for an elderly lady?

How incredible is it that I was assigned (and it was a random assignment...they slapped the code dots on the backs of the nametags before they ran them through the printer to put names on them) to go to the nursing home?

I'll be honest...I don't handle nursing homes well. But I knew as soon as I heard my assignment that it was no accident. I was able to go and participate and smile and pray and get on wheelchair level and look into eyes and hold hands. And the faces of the folks I spoke with are still coming before my heart. They're all on my permanent prayer list.

We had no inkling that a nursing home was going to be part of the outreach. God was preparing my heart better than I could ever have.

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