While we are definitely called to work with the Spirit of God so we might be more and more conformed to Christ, God must take the first step in order to guarantee this conformity. For as 1 John 4:19 tells us, “we love because he first loved us.” It is the effectual love of God that first changes our hearts in order to make us capable of love, and it is His example of love that reminds us again and again of our need to love other people.

1 John 4:19 is the verse Feed the Need Missions focuses on. We are to love our neighbors and be a support to others. We simply do that by giving a hot meal, praying for people, and building relationships.

This Valentine’s holiday, may you remember the sacrificial love that God gives us. Be reminded of “what Jesus would do” with those around you and remind yourself of the capable love that God gave us.

The New Year can often bring a mixed bag of emotions and memories for many of us. Some may have just experienced the best year ever and look forward to an even greater one looming ahead. Others may have just trudged through one deep struggle after another. The fresh calendar year brings desperate hope for things to be better, with an ache for the still-fresh wounds to slowly begin their process of healing.

Whether you’ve just walked through the greatest year of your life, or are incredibly glad to see this one finally over, one truth still rings clear amidst it all. You are not alone. Not ever.

Our God is a “with us” God. On the heels of the celebration of the birth of our King, that reminder has the power to carry us right into a fresh, new start. He is Immanuel, God with us. And though things and people around us shift and change, our God never changes.

In 2020 pray for His Spirit to lead each staff member every step of this New Year, and to guide our decisions and turn our hearts to deeply desire Him above all else. Also pray for wisdom for His strength and power to be constantly present within us. And we ask that you pray that He’d keep us far from the snares and traps of temptations. That He would whisper in our ear when we need to run, and whisper in our heart when we need to stand our ground.

We thank you for your prayers! May you have a blessed and God honoring New Year.

A family who was going to go out of town for Christmas loaded up their SUV with their luggage, took the dog over to a neighbor’s house, entered the coordinates in their GPS and had even recorded a CD with songs for the road. Everything was ready, and they were so relieved to finally be in the car. They were halfway down the street when the woman suddenly cried out to her husband, “We forgot the baby!”

To me that is a picture of Christmas. We trim our trees. We make our list and check it twice. We shop ’til we drop. We go to endless Christmas productions and parties. Then it dawns on us that we forgot the baby: the baby Jesus, the one whom Christmas is all about.

It is possible to celebrate Christmas and forget all about Christ. It is possible to lose Jesus at Christmas. It is possible in this celebration of Jesus’ birth to forget all about Jesus. Thankfully, even when we forget about him, he never forgets about us.

Really, the story of the birth of Jesus is the greatest of all stories. The Bible tells us, “But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law.” (Galatians 4:4 NLT).

The Christmas story is a factual, historical event. It still has all the pathos and magic and pageantry of the best Fairy Tales, yet this is a real story. All other stories we’ve heard are, at best, pale imitations of the greatest story ever told. The story of the birth of Jesus started in Heaven and unfolded on Earth.

When the angel appeared to the shepherds and announced, “For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11), the angel effectively was saying, “Listen, Earth. Augustus Caesar is not the savior of the world. Jesus is. The savior of the world is not in a palace in Rome. The savior of the world is wrapped in strips of cloth in a manger in Bethlehem.”

Jesus is the most influential person in human history. It has been said that history swings on the hinge of a stable door in Bethlehem. God came to this earth as a baby to die an agonizing death to ransom us from an eternal death sentence. The shadow of the cross lay over the beauty of that first Christmas night. This child was born to die so that we might live.

When we look back at the first Christmas story, we need to remember that the real Christmas tree wasn’t decorated with lights. The real Christmas tree was a cross that Christ hung on. The Bible says, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree” (Galatians 3:13 NKJV). Jesus died on a tree – on a cross – for the sin of all of the world. In fact the Bible says, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us” (Galatians 3:13 NKJV).

That is why red is the color of Christmas – not because Santa wore red or because we wrap our presents in red paper or attach red bows to holly wreaths or put red bulbs on our trees. Red is the color of Christmas because it is the color of the blood that was shed from the cross for each and every one of us. Jesus died for the sins of the world so he could make available to us the greatest of all gifts.

May you remember the true reason why we celebrate Christmas!

Samuel F Pugh wrote a very popular prayer that many know and use. I believe this prayer is how we need to pray everyday. God is so gracious and loving and gives us so abundantly. We are beyond blessed with so much, while unfortunately, some have so little. Why? I don’t have the answer other than we all have hardship of some kind.

“O God, when I have food, help me to remember the hungry. When I have work, help me to remember the jobless. When I have a home, help me to remember those who have no home at all. When I am without pain, help me to remember those who suffer. And remembering, help me to destroy my complacency, bestir my compassion, and be concerned enough to help, by word and deed, those who cry out for what we take for granted. Amen.”

This Thanksgiving as you gather together remember those who have little. Share your blessings together with your friends and family and “Give thanks in all things.” Pray with us and for us as we continue through November collecting Gobble Kits and distributing to those in need. Pray that lives will be changed through the Gobble Kits and that every need will be met this Thanksgiving Holiday.

We are always thankful for you!

Fall is here and we ask that during this time of harvest and Thanksgiving that you pray for us as we enter into this new season. Not only the season of fall but the season of Thanksgiving.

God of the seasons, there is a time for everything; there is a time for dying and a time for rising. We need courage to enter into the transformation process.

God of autumn, the trees are saying goodbye to their green, letting go of what has been. We, too, have our moments of surrender, with all their insecurity and risk. Help us to let go when we need to do so.

God of fallen leaves lying in colored patterns on the ground, our lives have their own patterns. As we see the patterns of our own growth, may we learn from them.

God of misty days and harvest moon nights, there is always the dimension of mystery and wonder in our lives. We always need to recognize your power-filled presence. May we gain strength from this.

God of harvest wagons and fields of ripened grain, many gifts of growth lie within the season of our surrender. We must wait for harvest in faith and hope. Grant us patience when we do not see the blessings.

God of geese going south for another season, your wisdom enables us to know what needs to be left behind and what needs to be carried into the future. We yearn for insight and vision.

God of flowers touched with frost and windows wearing white designs, may your love keep our hearts from growing cold in the empty seasons.

God of life, you believe in us, you enrich us, you entrust us with the freedom to choose life. For all this, we are grateful

We praise you in all things!

September is Disaster Preparedness month. During this time of year we have served many disasters and learned that prayer is the most powerful resource anyone can ever have! Please pray with us, for us, those affected, and those who may be affected by this upcoming season.

Hear us, merciful God that through the time of tragedy in those most affected, will be affected, and who have lost the most in previous disasters, will know of Your presence and learn of the Holy Spirit’s comfort. We ask that all Christians will remember their struggling brothers and sisters, and contribute the time to assist them in their continuing need. May our prayers rise up like incense for those affected by disaster, especially those who have lost their lives previously, for the families of the loved ones and for the lives who will be affected this season.

We ask that God send his Son; once again, to inspire recovery and lead all those who suffer to a joyful redemption in their lives.

That those who are homeless or without financial means to survive an ongoing natural disaster, will find strength through our commitment to pray for them, and for them to find adequate shelter, and eventually, permanent homes.

Lord we ask in a mighty was for endurance and strength and that financial means will be met this season, so we can restore lives by those affected and for us to not lose hope. We thank you in a mighty way.

We trust in your word “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers,”  Galatians 6:10 We ask that you allow us to continue to be your hands and feet.

In Jesus Name we Pray, Amen.

 

Help us be prepared for the unthinkable today.

Did you know September is National Preparedness Month? Since 2011 Feed the Need Missions has served communities hit with devastating floods, tornadoes, fires, and hurricanes with a hot meal, listening ear, and encouragement.

Can you help us be prepared to respond to the next disaster and make a donation today? Your gift of $10, $25, or $50 will help us respond quicker and serve more people when disaster strikes.

While we never hope for a disaster, we know your support will help us be even more prepared to respond when disaster does come our way.


 

The beginning of a new school year can elicit many different emotions. Parents have the pressures and stress of having to spend lots of money on new school clothes; children are often eager to meet new teachers, make new friends and share their stories of their summer adventures. Honestly, this preparation for a new start can cause students to feel sick with apprehension. For teachers, there may be anxieties surrounding the desire to ensure that all resources are in place for the first day of school.

Therefore, it is important to start the new school year in prayer, petitioning and thanksgiving to God; counteracting all worries. By doing so, you will experience the peace of God, thus guarding hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).

Pray with us for this years school year!

Are you feeling the summer heat yet? Nothing like a cold lemonade or a dip the pool to help beat the summertime heat. Perhaps the heat you’re currently experiencing is not so easily curbed. Are you feeling the heat of turbulent times? We should expect trials as followers of Jesus. In fact, James tells us we should consider them “great joy.”

“Consider it a great joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you experience various trials, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its full effect, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:2-4 (CSB)

James’ words seem counter intuitive. I should have “great joy” in the midst of my suffering. A little perspective may help. We often think of testing in the pass/fail sense, but James’ use of this word is different, and understanding what he meant brings great clarity.

Testing in this passage is the process used in silversmithing to purify silver. Silver is heated to the point of melting, which causes impurities to rise to the surface and are scraped off. The Silversmith repeats this process until there are no impurities left. He knows the silver to be completely pure when he is able to see his refection perfectly in the silver.

Jesus uses trials in our lives to do exactly what the Silversmith does, use the heat in our lives to draw out our impurities until he see’s his perfect reflection in us. That’s why we can “consider it great joy.”

God loves us too much to leave us in our mess. His love is drawing us closer to Him and His likeness.

Join me in prayer:
Jesus, thank you for the change you bring to my life, and thank you for the trials you use to draw me closer to you. Jesus, help me to find joy in the heated trials of my life. Thank you for loving me where I am and also for loving me so much you refuse to leave me in my mess. Allow me to see and celebrate trials you have already lead me through so I can give you the praise you deserve.
Amen.

All of us have so much to be thankful for each day. When we awake to a new day, when a friend is in touch with us, for the food we eat, for the water that flows into our homes, for flowers, birds, trees, our health and doctors.

Thanking God should be part of our daily lives. It is also good to tell God about worries and concerns: about relationship, family, finances, summer. Sharing those thoughts with God will often help to learn the burdens we carry.

Summer can be hard on families. They have more meals they need to provide for their children. Some don’t have air conditioning or clean water to drink. We ask for your prayers during this time of year as stresses can be higher.

A Bible verse that comes to mind is: John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”

We hope your days will shine even brighter on these beautiful summer days. Have a happy summer!

“I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her. (Luke 1:38)

As I ponder and mediate on this scripture, I can’t even start to imagine what Mary, the mother of Jesus, was thinking or feeling.  To comprehend that she was about to be carrying the Son of God. The promised Messiah!  The persecution she was about to go through. However, in the text it doesn’t seem that she cared about what people were going to say or think, or what was about to happen to her. Her response was simply, “I am the Lord’s servant, may your word to me be fulfilled.”

I pray as mothers that our prayer and desires be as Mary’s.  Just as Mary had a calling to physically carry the Son of God, we equally have an important calling. “Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20)

I think about how this is practical in everyday life as a mother.  
 
• Pray that our children will, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37)
 
• Live it out before your children what Jesus says, “Love your neighbor as yourself. (Matthew 22:39)
 
• Trust that the Holy Spirit will guide and teach our children, “But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things, and remind you of everything I have said to you. (John 14:26)
 
I pray for every mother that we can say, “I am the Lord’s servant, may your word to me be fulfilled.”
Happy Mother’s Day from your friends at Feed the Need Missions!