My God – Your Needs – His Glory

And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus Philippians 4:19

As Paul sat in prison he was feeling sorry for himself, rather he was focused on the needs of the people in the Philippian church. Funny that Paul’s visit to their city had ended with being beaten and thrown into the dungeon! This Thanksgiving there are some folks who live imprisoned by weakness, pain or abandonment in institutions we call nursing homes. They may receive excellent care and have fine meals but their loss of freedom and choice at the holiday can be stronger than at other times of the year. Wouldn’t this be an excellent time to organize a group to visit and remind the residents that God has not forgotten them

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Preparing for Thanksgiving

p1020406 The pond is still warm enough to swim in and the willows have not even thought about turning to their Fall yellow wardrobe but it is not to early to begin planning your Thanksgiving program for nursing home!

Moms and Dads, Grampas and Grammas and yes even some sons and daughters will not be spending Thanksgiving with family because they are in long term skilled nursing care. Whatever the reason

they can not be with their own family, there is no reason in the universe that we can not plan on being a part of God’s family for them this year.

A) The first step is to right now go to your recreation department director and get on her or his busy calendar. It is never too early to reserve a day that will work best for you and your church team to go.

B) Spend time praying and then planning the best presentation you can put together. If you were doing for a program for your church you would do no less than your best. Consider investing in materials such as song books, costumes, or decorations. One big hit with our local nursing home is the cookies that the youth hand out after the program!

C) Assemble your team (even if that is just 2-3) and begin to practice-practice-practice what you have decided together to do. Plan on a program of about 20 – 25 minutes maximum. Whatever more time you have after doing your music, skits and devotional should be given to personal visiting. The more our team has been going back over these last few years, the more the nursing home residents begin to remember their names and faces. Some of our most shy team members are the biggest hits among residents. We have many materials available for you to use including, workbooks, guides and a variety of true stories to inspire you long your own ministry journey.

Here is a short video giving a few of the basics that may help you to prepare

 

 

Nursing Home Workers Training Manual

In our effort to continue to provide new and better training materials for the nursing home worker we are offering this newly updated and expanded training manual. To the older manual we have added three training sessions focused on music ministry in the nursing home. Anyone within our northeast region is also welcome to ask for us to come and to introduce the training materials in your local church. Our longing and desire as always remains to call attention to the overwhelming needs and challenges to service that lie just the other side of the four walls of your local nursing home.

Our new manual is available on Amazon under the title. “Would You Do It For One? Workbook” or you can follow the link below. Be blessed as you consider the calling to nursing home ministry.

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lNursing Home Workers Training Manual

Just over the Hilltop

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I’ve got a mansion

Just over the hilltop

In that bright land where

We’ll never grow old     Ira Stanphill   1949

“Mansion over the Hilltop” is one of the favorite songs among our people at the nursing home, as we sing together on Wednesday afternoons. For people facing the reality of nursing home life, turning to the hope that Christ has to offer, is a ray of sunshine during during their dark moments. For family members struggling to understand how to help their Mom, Dad, sister or brother, God stands ready and willing to enter into their daily battles.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort. who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

God is the God of all comfort!     He understands what roads we have traveled and He  knows what lies ahead. God’s comfort is not just a “Hope you feel better…” superficial pity. God is touched by our heartaches and longs to enter into our tender and hurting areas to pour in His eternal comfort. He really has prepared a place for us to share with Him in Heaven. On this side of the hill we might just be seeing an empty barn and an uncut field. But from God’s perspective we are only a short distance from our destination. Together the journey will not be so lonely!

God is the father of Compassion!     The word compassion can be broken into two parts. The first part “com” means with and the second part “passion” tells of the earnest longing God has in His love for us. He is “with passion” about us. He is passionately in love with us, both when we are young, healthy and strong, as well as when we grow older, weak and frail. God cares about the smallest details of our lives and values every breath. Knowing that God is so passionate about us gives us the joy and the courage we need for each new day!

So that we can comfort!   When God has comforted us we will discover that we can be a blessing in someone else’s life. I have observed that the main difference between a swamp and a lake is that the swamp only takes in but never gives back. The flowing of the comfort through our hearts to others is the surest sign that we have begun to live out all that God has intended.

The nurse on duty, the person who cleans the room, and the resident who shares the same room may each be struggling. Marriage problems, financial crisis, rejection by a son or daughter, or a report from the lab may hover like a dark cloud on their horizons. An understanding touch, a gentle encouragement or a smile may be exactly what they need. When we have been wrapped in God’s comfort during our weakest moments, then we can travel that road with others. God doesn’t expect us to have all the answers. After all He is the God of all comfort(not us). We are only meant to be reminders that He, the comforter and passionate lover of our souls,  will one day wipe away every tear from our eyes and usher us into our own mansion over that hilltop!