I am posting this video again this year as I am struck by the reality of how difficult it is to for people to realize the vital need of nursing home ministry especially at the holiday times. Visiting and encouraging the residents is not just something extra or a nice gesture of the church. Even less is a holiday visit primarily about going home with a warm feeling. The absence of loved ones and of the care of a church family is so stark at Christmas and Thanksgiving that it cold be compared to the air some people receive through their breathing assistance. Without that correct ,ix of oxygen they receive through the device they will suffer terribly. The need for love, companionship, prayer and fellowship is constant and especially so at this time of year. If we allow Him, God will give us a portion of His great love to share. There is no better time to begin thinking of Nursing Home outreach than at Christmas. For more information on getting started in nursing home ministry you can check out our extensive list of video teaching on our Youtube channel. Be blessed and be a blessing!
I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me Matthew 25:43
Jesus didn’t spend a lot of time preaching to crowds in the synagogues. he was more comfortable among lepers, tired fishermen or curious sinners. Nursing home ministry isn’t something extra it is in fact a part of the heart of Jesus Christ! Anyone can do nursing home ministry – even you and me!
Now by chance a certain priest came down that road. And when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. Likewise a Levite, when he arrived at the place, came and looked, and passed by on the other side. But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion. So he went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; and he set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. Luke 10:31-34 NKJV
The man who fell among thieves is a lot like that of the residents in any nursing home. The thieves that caught him by surprise go by various names, such as age, physical disability or disease. People fall into a system where they lose control of their finances, their health and their personal freedom.
Three different people came by the man that day. The first was a priest. He came from a good family, had chosen to dedicate himself to God’s work and was recognized as a leader in his community. But in spite of his opportunity to show God’s mercy, that day he failed. He passed by, saw the need but chose not to get involved. The second man was only a follower of the first, so he simply took the same path – the path of least resistance. Last in line came the Samaritan. This was the man from whom no one expected any help. But when the Samaritan passed by that place, he saw the need, rolled up his sleeves and got involved. He became a neighbor when he became a part of the injured man’s world…
Nursing homes are filled with suffering and it is easy and convenient to hide from it. We hide because we are afraid of the answers we do have have for why God would allow suffering. One part of rolling up our sleeves like the Samaritan is to understand not the “why” of suffering but the “How can I show the love of God” in the middle of sometimes desperate situations in people’s lives. In this short video Joni shares her unique viewpoint on suffering.
“God permits what He hates to accomplish that which He loves” Joni Eareckson Tada
This did take a while to process the video but I was so touched by our youth and by the help of all the parents this past Christmas. They sang, presented the nativity and helped to raise the offering that enabled us to give a copy of the Book by Joni Eareckson Tada “Spectacle of Glory to each resident and to some of the staff. What a blessing to be included with such a great group of people. It doesn’t take a group of professionals to share the message of Jesus. Be blessed!