In the past my volunteering has always taken on the appearance of sweeping in and walking away when the act of service was over.  Even all those years of working with children, there was a definite beginning and end to each occasion when I was serving.  I am not discounting these points of light.  There was purpose to each and every occasion.  Lives were impacted by tutoring, reading, and building relationships over the years.  Remember the sweet little girl I mentored the entire four years I was in Fort Worth?  She learned a lesson of trust, acceptance, and care from a total stranger who came week in-week out to spend an hour with her.  It was an important time of growth for us both.

Remember the homeless shelter I tutored in every week while in Fort Worth?  It began my journey of working with the chronically  poor.  I was still sweeping in and walking away each week as I volunteered.  This time was always spent with elementary age children.  The population was transient--the goal was to get these families back on their feet.  I never met with anyone for longer than two to three months.  The faces were always changing.  The number of homeless families helped in this one shelter was staggering. There are several shelters in Fort Worth.

Move forward and I am back in Ruston and became involved with The Well.  This volunteering has taken on an entirely different look.  Over the months I have formed relationships with a core group of women.  We have grown to know each other and become friends.   With time and lots of talk, I have grown to have a much deeper understanding of the problems associated with poverty.   I also have slowly begun to take on the weight of the burden of the problems faced day in - day out when there is never enough.  I have looked in the face of the reality of the very real rationing of services among the poor.  When you do not have financial resources, no transportation, limited education, and always health issues, the world can seem daunting.  I have gone from standing on the sidelines holding the water bucket or shouting encouragement to truly being in the game.  I am feeling the bruises and the  pain with being shoulder to shoulder with the players.  My back becomes bent with the weight of the burden of helping those living in need.

The fruit I am producing has come with a cost.  God has called me to obedience.  With my willingness to serve, He has pruned me and shaped me slowly over the years.  There is great joy with serving, but there is also a great cost.  I do not always serve with a wonderful attitude, but I keep on serving knowing this is His plan.  God takes me--bad attitude and all--and produces fruit.  These ladies know they can trust me, know I have their best welfare at heart, and God has used my willingness to grow relationships to bridge societal gaps.  There are nights I come home with not one ounce of emotional energy left.  ALWAYS--the next morning I am rested, renewed, and ready to face the battle again.  If we are obedient, God is faithful and WILL provide all we need to serve those in our path.  There is a very real cost---time, resources, and energy are depleted when you agree to help shoulder the burden of God's children.  The rewards always outweigh the cost--you can NEVER out give God.  He is well pleased and shows His good pleasure with us by His great love for us.  

God is enough in fact He is MORE than enough!

"But if anyone has the world's goods and see his brother in need, 

yet closes his heart against him,

how does God's love abide in him?

Little children, let us not love in word or talk,

but in deed and in truth."

I John 3:17-18


  1. I so admire your steadfastness in helping those in need, Lulu. With this pandemic, I've had to pull back from anything related to helping others in a one-on-one context. I'm glad you're not letting that keep you from serving others as God wants you to.

  2. Thank you for reminding us that life's all about relationships. Faithfulness. Service.

    1. A blog coming soon about being an introvert, Linda, and trying to keep myself going! God is faithful!

  3. MASKS & vaccination, Martha has allowed me to do this. We stay outside as much as possible also. It still has had some precarious moments!
    Blessings, My Friend!


Your comments keep my writing and often cause me to think. A written form of a hug or a pat on the back and an occasional slap into reality---I treasure them all!