Compassion for the New Year
2021 is now in our review mirror and 2022 has begun. It is this time of year that we, maybe because we feel forced to somehow or guilted into, begin to think about all the changes, or RESOLUTIONS, that we want to make in our lives. Lose weight and exercise more are probably the top of most people’s list (they are for me… every year) but you may also have things like pray more, worry less, get out of debt, witness more to others, or simply to put God first this year. I was reading in Proverbs in a couple of places… ok, actually I was searching for “failing” or “falls” because I started thinking about all of the times I’ve started and failed at things. I felt a little better about myself when I got to chapter 24 and verse 16 when the author says, “For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again…”! Now, I didn’t even read the whole chapter or consider the context so I may have been taking this verse completely out of context, but I felt a little better. You can ask people close to me, I tend to beat myself up a bit about not being everything I can be or that God has called me to be. I try to constantly remind myself about God’s grace and His mercy, which is new each day, and I ultimately find my peace there.
Over in Proverbs 16, it says that God weighs our motives and I also find comfort in that. But a verse I have thought about and claimed for the last couple of years is verse 7, “When a man’s ways are pleasing to the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.” More than completing resolutions or losing weight, I want my ways to be pleasing to God. I want my motives to be pure, even when it may seem like I fail. Now, I’m going to fail at least 7 times (and I have a feeling even more) but that’s the goal for 2022.
God says to love Him and love others as yourself. The way to love others, and even be at peace with our enemies, is through COMPASSION. Serving and loving people through compassion ministry is single handedly best way to show someone that you love Jesus and that you love them. We are going keep trying to do that at Operation Inasmuch this year. And we want to invite you as individuals AND AS ENTIRE CHURCH BODIES to come along with us.
2021 was really a great year! Maybe that’s a matter of perspective but that is my perspective. Let me share with you some of the highlights of the ministry:
- The addition of great new Board members (follow us on Facebook & Instagram as we highlight each one over the next couple of months)
- Trainings with new churches that want to bless their communities
- 40 brand new churches utilizing the ministry for the first time
- Reports from 11 different states about their Inasmuch Day or Inasmuch United event
- Financial blessings when we needed them most
- Meeting back in person for our appreciation dinners
- Over 440,000 meals packed through Food Packing events in 4 different states
- And new friends and connections this year all throughout the body of Christ.
Just like each of you, Operation Inasmuch saw more than enough frustrations this past year, but I am simply not focusing on those things. I saw a cartoon recently and there were two guys together outside. One man began by saying, “Aren’t you terrified of what 2022 will bring. Everything is just awful and scary right now in our world?” The second guy, not looking up from whatever he was doing in the ground says, “I think it will bring flowers”. So, the first guy, not expecting that response asked, “Yes? And Why?” The second man, obviously planting something in the dirt says, “Because I’m planting flowers!”
Plant compassion in 2022 and focus on how you can be biblically obedient in loving your neighbor! It’s a time for the broken and the needy in our world to see the Church in a new way. A time for the Church to serve the unserved, love the unloved, and reach out to the unchurched in ways they have never done before. We are the Church, YOU and ME, and we have a chance to step up and tell people that Jesus loves them by showing them that we love them. What an opportunity that we have been given!
Operation Inasmuch wants to help you, wants to help your church with just these things. We want to encourage you and pray for you. We want to excite you and invigorate you. We want to challenge you and then walk with you as we all join in this mission of compassion. Please let us know how we can do that.