Siku ya Mama Maua giveaway na Janie Sjogren

mothersdayBaadhi ya watu kusahau au kusubiri mpaka dakika ya mwisho ya kupata Mama maua au kadi ya. Maua unaweza kuwa ghali wakati kununuliwa katika duka mmoja mmoja, lakini wanaweza kununuliwa kwa chini ya senti hamsini kwa maua kwa wingi. Your group can probably explain to a local supermarket florist what you are trying to do with your outreach. Given enough advance notice, he or she can order a quantity of carnations and pass the discounted price on to you.

Attach to each flower an outreach connect card and a ribbon. As with a soft-drink or water giveaway, if your’e doing this at a grocery store (where we usually locate), situate yourself by the entrance, not the exit. You’ll want 5+ people per team.

Another version of this is the Secretaries Day or Sweetest Day flower giveaway with a blank card for the giver to write his or her sentients on as a greeting.

Of course, don’t give away flowers near a flower vendor.

Where To Go:

  • Campuses
  • Parks
  • Neighborhoods
  • Sporting Events
  • Downtown
  • Commuters
  • Shopping Centers

What You’ll Need

  • Carnations
  • Ribbons
  • Outreach Connect Cards like those below

Mother's Day Connect Card

Mother's Day Connect Card

Mother's Day Connect Card

3 Kubwa Outreach Miradi Kwa Spring kwa Janie Sjogren

Spring ni hapa na msimu huu ni fursa kubwa ya kufikia nje kwa jamii yako na kuwaonyesha upendo wa Mungu kwa njia ya vitendo.

Hapa ni tatu kubwa kuwafikia miradi ambayo ni kamili kwa ajili ya spring:

1. Free Car Wash

This is an effective, vitendo huduma. Sisi kutoa kuosha gari kila wiki katika majira ya joto. Have a professionally made banner or sign that says “Totally Free Car Wash!” au “Free – No Kidding – Car Wash!” Have a few people who are not shy, cheerfully yell at cars driving by – “Free Car Wash!” Former cheerleaders are great for this role! This outreach needs a good project manager to organize volunteers, car flow and ensure a quality job.

Purchase high quality car wash soap and do a thorough job – scrub the tires and dry the car. Your hard work will speak volumes about God’s love!

Materials:

  • Connection Cards
  • Free Car Wash Signs
  • Hoses and nozzles
  • Water Source (important!)
  • Buckets
  • Car Wash Soap
  • Squeegee
  • Tire brushes
  • Towels/Chamois Cloth

Team Size: 8+

Outreach Cost: Inexpensive

Child-friendly: Ndiyo, it’s great fun for kids, but they must be well supervised

 

2. General Yard Cleanup

After the winter weather is over, all sorts of debris become obvious. Go door to door with gloves, rakes, and trash bags.

Materials:

Team Size: 2+

Outreach Cost: Free / inexpensive

Child-friendly: No

 

3. Bottled Water Giveaway

Many people prefer water to soft drinks. Ice down bottles of water in Igloo coolers for an alternative to Coke giveaways. Use the same drink connection cards. We don’t recommend combining this with a soda giveaway because it offers too many options and gets complicated. You can do this anywhere there are a lot of people gathered.

Materials:

Team Size: 3+

Outreach Cost: Moderate

Child-friendly: No

 

Don’t forget to give out outreach connect cards during your spring outreaches. If you need high-quality outreach cards, you can click on any of the links above to see the great selection of designs we offer, or simply go to this link below:

http://www.kindnessresources.com/Outreach-Cards-C10.aspx

Keep walking in the outflow!

4 Hali ya hewa ya joto Outreach Mawazo na Janie Sjogren

Ni kupata joto na hii mabadiliko nini tunaweza kufanya kwa kuonyesha upendo kwa jamii zetu. Kuangalia ugavi yako chumbani, na kufanya baadhi ya spring-kusafisha freshen up kila kitu. kawaida kits choo-kusafisha na windshield kuosha vifaa ni mwanzo, but add some more spark to your outreaches with a good variety of options at the ready. Here are four outreach ideas for warmer weather.

Put A Twist On The Typical Car Wash – Make It a $1 Car Wash

Get big banners that read, “Free Car Wash—No Kidding!” or “$1 Car Wash!” In the $1 Car Wash version, you give the person $1 after washing their car, with a connect card explaining why you are doing this, “This is a simple way to say God loves you, bila kuwa na masharti!"

Set up on a street that has significant traffic flow, with water access and an easy entrance and exit. Use soccer cones to direct traffic where you want it. Create an inviting sitting area with soccer chairs and iced down drinks in a cooler.

Place several high-energy, cheerleader types on corners near your site. Tell them to shake their signs, wave their hands and generally direct people into the car wash.

Make sure to have friendly people to greet the drivers, and to talk to people. Don’t get so busy washing that you forget to pass out a card and an explanation that you are doing this as a community service project to show them a little of God’s love.

Put Your Coolers To Work!

Rolling coolers are great for water and pop outreaches. If your church can afford one, get a large Ice Maker to always have ice at the ready. Coolers also work well to transport hot dogs and hamburgers wrapped in fast-food foil wrappers. The cooler acts like a steamer, and the goods arrive warm. Offer with individually wrapped condiments, and deliver around 11am while people are still hungry.

Ice Cream Coupon Give-Away

Ice cream is a happy food! Buy a quantity of ice cream coupons at a discount. Connect with your local ice cream shop, or with McDonald’s or Chick-Fil-A. Explain that you are doing, a community service project, and that you plan on giving the ice cream coupons away.

Places to go include campuses, parks, neighborhoods, sporting events, and skate parks. Give out a Connection Card with each Ice Cream Coupon.

Festival Survival Packs

Where food and drink are being sold as part of a community event, don’t be rude and give away drinks or food. Instead, make up little packs of items in a small zip-lock bag.

Items could include: Towelettes for cleaning sticky fingers, small samples of lotion or suntan cream, a peppermint hard candy to freshen breath, tissues, golf pencils and small pads of post-its or pads made from clean-cut scrap paper.

Don’t forget to give out outreach connect cards during your spring outreaches. If you need high-quality outreach cards, you can click on any of the links above to see the great selection of designs we offer, or simply go to this link below:

http://www.kindnessresources.com/Outreach-Cards-C10.aspx

Sasa mpango Kwa maana siku ya kufikia walio nje Fadhili wapendanao! na Janie Sjogren

"Je, wewe kupata Valentine wako leo?" Ni rahisi kuweka Siku ya wapendanao kuwafikia pamoja katika muda mfupi. Watu ni kweli kufungua wakati huu wa mwaka, na kila mtu anapenda kupata upendo kidogo umeonyesha yao!

Roses ni wazo kubwa, amefungwa kwa pumzi ya mtoto na baadhi ya karatasi florist kutoka florist mtaa wako. Agizo sehemu na kuwa na timu yako wrap kila kitu juu. Wrap up kila red rose mmoja mmoja. Wrap kwa pumzi ya mtoto, nyekundu florist karatasi na karatasi ya plastiki, kisha kufunga Ribbon na kadi kuwafikia ni. Roses ni kubwa na kutoa nje kando ya barabara, na watu ni kushangaa ni bure. Baadhi ya makanisa kutumia "$ 1 Roses" ishara na kisha kutoa rose na dola kwa watu! Carnations Red pia kazi vizuri kwa ajili ya mradi huu.

Chocolates ni zawadi kubwa ya upendo wakati huu wa mwaka. Weka Hershey kisses au nyingine pipi amefungwa katika mifuko midogo wazi amefungwa na Ribbon na kadi na kusema kuwa "Hii ni njia kidogo na basi unajua Mungu anakupenda, bila kuwa na masharti!" Zawadi ya pipi kwa wafanyakazi katika maduka ni mara nyingi pamoja na kupokea, vilevile kuonyesha upendo katika uuguzi na nyumba. Kununua 3 "X 5" zip-kufungwa mifuko online.

Weka tarehe na wakati! Kupata timu yako pamoja, kupanga nini utasikia kutoa na kuweka tarehe kwa ajili ya Siku yako kuwafikia wapendanao. Hakikisha una vitu vyote kukusanyika kabla ya kuwafikia.

Kama pakiti yao, watu wako kuwapa mbali! Njia nyingine kubwa ya kupata pipi kufanyika kwa watu ni kutuma waliohudhuria Jumapili yako nje ya mlango na 5 au 10 seti ya pipi na kadi masharti tayari kutoa mbali.

Watu wanahitaji kujua wao ni kupendwa, na hii ni njia rahisi ya kufanya hivyo!

Kwa kadi kuungana na mifuko zip-kufungwa, kuangalia nje KindnessResources.com.

3 Easy na furaha Inexpensive Holiday kufikia walio nje na Steve Sjogren

1. Bread Giveaway

Everybody likes bread! Especially from those high-end bread stores with Bread Company somewhere in the name… Did you know that you can arrange to receive day-old bread from specialty bread stores for FREE? You can also check with national chain grocery stores that have in-house bakeries. Talk to the store manager and explain your outreach concept. Tell a few stories of the people you are helping and you will likely establish your “daily bread” connection. It will only take one or two of these connections to begin a substantial ministry in your community.

Many of these stores do not have a reliable source to distribute their old bread to. The key is to be consistent and reliable in picking up their bread. You will need to have a team and as schedule so you don’t disappoint the bread store managers. As a good public relations gesture, write a letter of thanks to the store manager for his company’s generosity to the community (and don’t be surprised to see it framed and posted on the wall of the store).

The ministry is simple and straight forward. Knock on the doors of the houses and apartments. Say, “Hi, we’re giving away fresh, free high-quality bread. Could you use some, or do you know anyone in the neighborhood who could use some?” Give recipients an outreach card and offer to pray for them as you hand out the bread.

How Do You Find People To Give Bread To?

Cold calling (just knocking on doors) in lower-income neighborhoods and apartments complexes works fine with this project. Stay away from neighborhoods closest to the donating store.

What You’ll Need

2. Big Christmas Party

People in need don’t always celebrate Christmas properly because there aren’t Christ-centered celebration opportunities. You can sponsor an event that will be fun and cause everyone to focus on Jesus.

The elements of this celebration include playing games and singing songs. As you sing Christmas carols, make sure the words are available. It’s also fun to have a few inexpensive rhythm instruments to play along with.

Someone can share what Christmas is about in a very positive and upbeat way – simply explaining, “Christmas is important to me because…”

Decorations and refreshments and a meal can be simple or elaborate, depending on the inclination of your group.

For about $1 per photo, you can take Polaroid pictures of kids with an ethnically correct Santa. Design a simple backdrop and get up-close with the camera. Mount the photo on red or green construction paper and add the child’s name and year with a gold or silver marking pen.

At the conclusion of the party, give away small gifts as people depart – perhaps a Bible or devotional book. Consider giving away the decorations as well.

How Do You Find People Who Would Enjoy A Christmas Party?

Invite those who are already connected with your ministry to those in need. Give out fliers or invitations at previous events in the neighborhood, or simply walk around the neighborhood and distribute fliers.

What You’ll Need:

  • facility to host the party
  • Polaroid camera and film
  • construction paper
  • glue sticks
  • gold and silver marking pens
  • refreshments
  • outreach cards

3. Winter Survival Kits

Winter can be hard on the body and the soul. A survival kit is great encouragement to everyone who receives one.

The kit contains a packet of facial tissue, lip balm, throat lozenges, and an outreach card.

In Action

Our churches have had great success with this project as we have aimed it at parents and business professionals. We go to parks that parents frequent with their children and downtown sidewalks as business professionals make their way out to lunch. When those we meet notice how nice the kit is, they are very grateful and usually end up striking a conversation with us.

Where To Go

  • campuses
  • parks
  • neighborhoods
  • sporting events
  • downtown
  • commuters
  • shopping centers

What You’ll Need

  • zip lock plastic bags
  • lip balm
  • throat lozenges
  • individual packets of facial tissue
  • outreach cards

Why Outreach Cards

When doing a project, it is important to have a means to connect with those you serve. An outreach card is a business-sized card you can leave with those you have served so they can get back in touch you if they desire. The idea isn’t to accomplish a sales job where you promote your church. Rather, it is a simple way to leave your church’s name, address, phone number and service times so that when future needs arise, those you’ve served will have a way of reconnecting with you. The idea is to be available without giving out personal addresses.

If you need outreach cards for your holiday projects, we highly recommend those on our sister site at KindnessResources.com.

Christmas Outreach Card

Ua Kutoa-Aways Je kufikia walio nje Mkuu kwa Janie Sjogren

flowers

Kupata kundi pamoja kwa kifungu up maua, na baadhi ya wengine lafudhi kijani. Lengo popote kwamba unaweza kupata wanawake, I.E. maeneo ya ununuzi, Nursing Homes, na watu kuacha maktaba na zoezi klabu.

Kununua ndoo ya maua, pumzi ya mtoto na baadhi Fern. Kupata baadhi ya Ribbon, wazi na kijani karatasi wrap maua katika, na baadhi ya kadi preprinted na bendi mpira.

outreach cardKujenga kadi ambatanisha na maua:
Sisi tu alitaka wewe kujua wewe ni kupendwa!

Kuwa na siku heri!

Kutoka ______(kanisa, tovuti, mara sherehe, namba ya simu)

Huu ni ukumbusho ndogo kwamba wewe ni kupendwa!

au

Kuwa na siku kubwa!

Kutoka ______(kanisa, tovuti, mara sherehe, namba ya simu)

Kujenga Phrase: Kutumia maneno juu, au kuunda yako mwenyewe.

Nakala Ni: kwenye karatasi za rangi au cardstock.

Kata Ni: Hawawajui perfectionist kutumia cutter karatasi na kukata katika kadi ndogo.

Punch Ni: Kufanya shimo na shimo Punch katika kila kadi.

Kifungu Ni: Kununua ndoo ya maua, pumzi ya mtoto na baadhi Fern. Wrap maua na baadhi ya kijani, Surround na kijani na ya wazi plastiki karatasi floral wrap maua katika, na salama na bendi ya mpira.

Thread Ni: Thread Ribbon au mbili kwa njia ya shimo ambatisha note kwa maua. Matumizi ya moja au mbili kuachwa colorful, labda 2 kuachwa ya 12 "ya aidha ya nyekundu, pink, zambarau au nyeupe curling Ribbon.

Ndoo Ni: Weka mwisho chini ya maua ndani ya maji katika ndoo, tub, coolers au mapipa kusafirisha maua yako kwa mkono-nje tovuti yako.

LOCATIONS KWA OUTREACH

Matendo kukusudia ya Wema: Kupata wanawake kutoa maua kwa kando ya barabara, nyumba ya uuguzi, maeneo ya ununuzi na mlango kwa mlango kutoa-aways.

Kuwawezesha watu katika kanisa kueneza upendo wa zaidi ya kuta za kanisa: Je, maua na kadi masharti na tayari siku ya Jumapili asubuhi, na kuuliza watu kuchukua yao kama wao kuondoka kutoa mbali. Wapate kuwa na mtu katika akili, au wapate kujua ya mtu ambaye anaishi peke yake katika kitongoji chao ambao wanaweza kutumia kuinua. Au wangeweza kuzigawa kufanyika kwa wageni wao kuja hela.

Nini cha kusema

"Sisi tu alitaka kubariki siku yako!"" Sisi tu alitaka wewe kujua wewe ni kupendwa!"

Dr. Martin Luther King Day Outreach? na Dk. Savant

Dr. Savant

Ndugu Dr. Savant,

Je, una mawazo yoyote kwa ajili SE juu ya Dr. Martin Luther King Day?

Mchungaji Eugene Jackson
–Detroit Michigan


That is an excellent question! Shule nyingi ingekuwa na upendo na kuwa na wanachama wa kanisa lako kusaidia nje wakati wa mipango na sikukuu siku hii muhimu sana. Kwa kweli, why not host a parent teacher appreciation dinner at one of your local schools? It would be easy to do. All it involves is taking the normal Sunday Church social or brunch on the road during the next PTA meeting. You could expand this small outreach into a reading tutoring program. Tutoring reading is actually easier than it seems. Kids love to be read to–even older kids. As you win them over by reading a few stories, you then extend beyond that and show them how to read on their own. I will let you in on a little secret. When you read out loud to kids, visualation of the story comes naturally. Most kids that have difficulty with reading lack the ability to translate the character strings on a page into viual context in their brain. That is were you come in. Sure there are some children that have serious learning disabilities that require the intervention of a trained professional, but what they often lack even more is face time with a caring adult that models learning for them. That small investment of your time and energy will pay huge dividends in their lives. The economy is really bad right now, and families with children are really feeling the pinch. So are teachers and schools. Why not consider sponsoring a few kids or classroom with books to read for sustained silent reading? I can even put you in touch with a great company that sells book with African American themes for schools, teachers, and families of students at a fantastic price. If you drop our editor’s name, you will get an extra discount:

TOWNSEND PRESS

–Dr. Savant


Fun Easy and Inexpensive Holiday Outreaches by Kindness Resources

1. Bread Giveaway

Kindness Resources
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Everybody likes bread! Especially from those high-end bread stores with Bread Company somewhere in the name… Did you know that you can arrange to receive day-old bread from specialty bread stores for FREE? You can also check with national chain grocery stores that have in-house bakeries. Talk to the store manager and explain your outreach concept. Tell a few stories of the people you are helping and you will likely establish your “daily bread” connection. It will only take one or two of these connections to begin a substantial ministry in your community.

Many of these stores do not have a reliable source to distribute their old bread to. The key is to be consistent and reliable in picking up their bread. You will need to have a team and as schedule so you don’t disappoint the bread store managers. As a good public relations gesture, write a letter of thanks to the store manager for his company’s generosity to the community (and don’t be surprised to see it framed and posted on the wall of the store).

The ministry is simple and straight forward. Knock on the doors of the houses and apartments. Say, “Hi, we’re giving away fresh, free high-quality bread. Could you use some, or do you know anyone in the neighborhood who could use some?” Give recipients an outreach card and offer to pray for them as you hand out the bread.

How Do You Find People To Give Bread To?

Cold calling (just knocking on doors) in lower-income neighborhoods and apartments complexes works fine with this project. Stay away from neighborhoods closest to the donating store.

What You’ll Need

* a supply of high-quality bread

* outreach cards

2. Big Christmas Party

People in need don’t always celebrate Christmas properly because there aren’t Christ-centered celebration opportunities. You can sponsor an event that will be fun and cause everyone to focus on Jesus.

The elements of this celebration include playing games and singing songs. As you sing Christmas carols, make sure the words are available. It’s also fun to have a few inexpensive rhythm instruments to play along with.

Someone can share what Christmas is about in a very positive and upbeat way – simply explaining, “Christmas is important to me because…”

Decorations and refreshments and a meal can be simple or elaborate, depending on the inclination of your group.

For about $1 per photo, you can take Polaroid pictures of kids with an ethnically correct Santa. Design a simple backdrop and get up-close with the camera. Mount the photo on red or green construction paper and add the child’s name and year with a gold or silver marking pen.

At the conclusion of the party, give away small gifts as people depart – perhaps a Bible or devotional book. Consider giving away the decorations as well.

How Do You Find People Who Would Enjoy A Christmas Party?

Invite those who are already connected with your ministry to those in need. Give out fliers or invitations at previous events in the neighborhood, or simply walk around the neighborhood and distribute fliers.

What You’ll Need:

* facility to host the party

* Polaroid camera and film

* construction paper

* glue sticks

* gold and silver marking pens

* refreshments

* outreach cards

3. Winter Survival Kits

Winter can be hard on the body and the soul. A survival kit is great encouragement to everyone who receives one.

The kit contains a packet of facial tissue, lip balm, throat lozenges, and an outreach card.

In Action

Our churches have had great success with this project as we have aimed it at parents and business professionals. We go to parks that parents frequent with their children and downtown sidewalks as business professionals make their way out to lunch. When those we meet notice how nice the kit is, they are very grateful and usually end up striking a conversation with us.

Where To Go

* campuses

* parks

* neighborhoods

* sporting events

* downtown

* commuters

* shopping centers

What You’ll Need

* zip lock plastic bags

* lip balm

* throat lozenges

* individual packets of facial tissue

* outreach cards

Why Outreach Cards

When doing a project, it is important to have a means to connect with those you serve. An outreach card is a business-sized card you can leave with those you have served so they can get back in touch you if they desire. The idea isn’t to accomplish a sales job where you promote your church. Rather, it is a simple way to leave your church’s name, address, phone number and service times so that when future needs arise, those you’ve served will have a way of reconnecting with you. The idea is to be available without giving out personal addresses.

If you need outreach cards for your holiday projects, we highly recommend those on our sister site at KindnessResources.com.

Mipango Holiday kufikia walio nje

Kuna mara kadhaa wakati wa mwaka wa kalenda wakati wafuasi wa Yesu na fursa ya kipekee kuungana dots kati ya moyo wa Mungu na mioyo ya makundi ya kuumiza watu katika jamii yetu. Msimu wa Krismasi ni labda mkuu wa nyakati hizo. Kwa njia, sisi karibu na faida haki, because even skeptics are overwhelmed by all of the holiday endorphins and excitement. We can clearly target what people are hungry for, if we slow down just long enough to listen to what is on their hearts. We are here at Christmas to work in tandem with God’s Spirit as the time of the season allows us to get in touch with people in unique ways. The opportunities that lie before us are immense if we are willing to be focused.

Wrapping Presents
This is one of the most powerful ways you can serve a person during this time of the year. It is powerful because you are able to engage in a genuine conversation with them as you wrap their gift. More times than not, they will ask you why you are doing this for them. That curiosity will provide a natural opportunity for evangelism. With that said, it is easy to get caught up in the physical action of present wrapping. We need to take care not to forget the spiritual aspect of serving them. It is always best to slow things down a bit. Take ample advantage of the opportunity to share God’s love.

Wrapping Presents – Large Scale Project
There are several pointers to keep in mind if you are doing this as a larger scale event. You will need to begin recruiting a fairly large volunteer force—don’t procrastinate—start vision-casting now! The key to this outreach will be the personnel you have gathered together. They must be enthused and on the same page. You are looking for the people that are excitement catalysts in your church. These folks thrive on the energy and joy of the season. Start gathering materials now! Don’t put this off. Order plenty of what you will need. Keep in mind you don’t want to frustrate your volunteer force. The name of the game here is to have “More than plenty” so people will not have to twiddle their thumbs waiting on restocking when they could be serving the public and having divine conversations. Start praying now! We will be connecting with people who are not yet connected with us nor are they connected with the God of heaven and earth. They are in immense spiritual need, no matter what walk of life they come from. We are his representatives. We are not only wrapping presents – we are spiritual ambassadors. We need to blend the spiritual act of praying with the physical act of serving. If we get out of sync with our serving we cease to be effective in our activity. We are merely chasing our tails.

Strategy
Our role is to serve them all and let God sort them out. In the past people have suggested that we should only seek to serve the marginalized, but I would argue that their definition of poverty, may be too narrow. The beauty of wrapping gifts a shopping mall or department store is that you will encounter people with diverse socio-economic status, but they all have spiritual and emotional needs. That is what we are really seeking to touch. Do not get bogged down by skill. Even if you are all thumbs, chances are you are still doing the person a tremendous service. In fact I have had people take over the wrapping from me as I simply hand them the supplies and hold down flaps and strings while they do elaborate wrapping. What this is really about is the conversation you share while the gift is being wrapped. You don’t have to be a highly skilled craft person to do this activity. We can all engage in the simple sharing line of “We are here to wrap your present as a part of XYZ Community Church to show you some love this Christmas. Make sure you remind folks: “We are not a part of the mall / store personnel – we pay for this ourselves in order to show God’s love in a practical way to the community. Our intent is to give God’s love, not just talk about it.” Some simple chatter will do the trick until the other person clicks in with some acknowledgement of what you are saying. They will either engage with you or they will change the subject. Many will want to chat a bit. Keep in mind you will be planting a seed of generosity in the hearts of the majority of people we come in contact with. This will be one of many seeds that person will need to come in contact along their trek prior to their conversion to Jesus. We all have a unique path into a love relationship with Jesus. Very rarely was it a sudden conversion. Our part as his followers is to tell our story along the way between now and then to as many as possible. In wrapping presents we get plenty of chances to share our story and his story at the same time.

It should be noted that if you don’t have the resources or volunteers to do this at a mall or large department store, a smaller discount store with a limited schedule could be a perfect starting location for your group. You can always work towards the goal of broadening this event in future years. People will join up in your outreaches for many reasons, but they will stay for one main reason – because they enjoyed working with the people. You need to work with the shift leaders present to make sure you are not frustrating the people present in any way if that is at all possible. I recommend the primary leaders of this be connected with, be brought coffee while the shifts are going on, be asked in a jovial way, “Are we having fun yet?" – engaging ways of connecting the dots with the team by various levels of interactive approaches to show care to all involved.

Liquor Store Outreach?
As Jesus often demonstrated, we need to hang out with the sinners. The name of the game is, “We are here to connect with people who don’t go to church.” This is always the objective to keep in front of you. The object is not to serve churchy people. For the most part those folks already understand the notion of God’s love. I ran into a group who had latched onto the giftwrapping concept last season, but they got the application pretty much backwards. They set up shop in front of a Christian book store. I suggested they move across the parking lot to a liquor store. They laughed heartily at the suggestion. I didn’t laugh. I wasn’t kidding. Not in the least. Another pastor friend was present when this conversation took place. He chimed in. “Yes, that’s a very good idea. If you are after the head tilt with this project you really need to switch locations. I did an outreach like this a few years ago when I was working for a Church in California and we set up the outreach in front of a liquor store. One guy came in planning to just buy some booze and other supplies for a party, including a last minute gift—the ultimate one stop shopping. Not only was he converted by this radical love he certainly wasn’t shopping for, this guy became a member of the church and over time became one of its most influential leaders!”

Keep in mind not everyone that shops at a liquor store has drinking problem—we are wise to not generalize. We are also wise to go to places that have historically been cast off by the church culture in general. Once again: “serve them all, let God sort them out!” A liquor store may be prime real estate for holding a small, outdoor gift-wrapping outreach. Make sure you clearly explain your intent and the point of the outreach with the owner / manager of the store prior to doing the outreach. This conversation is key to the success of the outreach making it or not.

The Taste of Christmas
Here is a quick and easy outreach you can put together as either a business blast kindness event, or a take-home kit for you to give to church members as the exit from weekend services. The materials are easy to gather: 1) A bulk supply of Ziploc snack size baggies 2) Well crafted connect cards with a holiday design 3) High quality Christmas candy.

Candy Canes are always welcomed it seems. If you really want to make a dent inpeople’s lives, purchase different colored candy canes other than the standard red and white colors. Apparently there are now even exotic fruit flavors available in neon colors, but with the traditional shape. Make sure you have some chocolate. This is crucial. Hershey’s makes a seasonal version of Kisses that are decorated in green foil or red foil. There is actually a large variety of seasonal candy that you will find on display starting in early November. You are going for a mix that is attractive in appearance and flavor. The connect card is the anchor. In fact we have a few new fantastic designs available now at Kindness Resources LLC. The name of the game is to give away as many of these as possible with a small connect card inserted into the Ziplock bag. One candy cane, a few pieces of candy is all you need for each bag to make a small effective touch. If you purchase in bulk you can keep your cost efficiency to between $0.07 to $0.12 per touch!

Black Friday Outreach
Some daring people / churches have the courage to take on enormous crowds that gather for shopping specials the day after Thanksgiving. This outreach needs to be done in connection with the store that is willing to allow you to do something spectacular directly in front of their location. I have neverheard of a store that wasn’t anything less than tickled at the offer of having a Black Friday outreach done in front of their location. I have on occasion heard of stores where they pay for part or all of the outreach materials so long as the people from the local church manned the labor aspect of the outreach. This is actually easy to do. Think of any nice touch to get the attention of a frenzied shopper:

  • Free Coffee/Hot Chocolate (check out the cool back pack dispenser)
  • Free Battery Packs
  • Free Ribbon
  • Free Scotch Tape
  • Free Wrapping Paper Kits
  • Free “Pop Up” Bows
  • Shopping Cart Valet Service
  • Umbrella Outreach
  • Windshield Cleaning Patrol

Final Thoughts
This season, make sure that you remember that people are hungry for relationship. The holidays remind us we are more ill-equipped for relationships than at any other times of the year. We get around those who are perhaps challenging to us, yet they are the ones we love. We are hungry to see progress made in relationships, but we don’t know how to make progress without being driven crazy at the same time. This is a time of year when people are in some ways the most open to a “Big God” encounter. There is a sort of collective verbal outcry that goes very much like this:

"Dear God, if you are real and if you answer prayers, please hear mine. I ask that you would change my family and make us more loving toward one another. Amen.”

It is also important to remember that people are in a hurry. Nearly everyone is on a short emotional fuse. Thus, we must be mindful of the tendency on the parts of everyone to be a bit odd about things in general. If it is ever appropriate to proceed with caution now is the time of year for those words to be taken to heart.

We should also make sure that we invest time and energy on retail employees. Given the current economy, this holiday season is predicted to see a record number of new seasonal part-time employees hit the work force. For many this grim reality of a second or third job will be a shock to their system. They will be in as much need for kindness as they will the extra funds they hope to gain by adding ten to twenty hours onto their already exhausting hours of employment just to make ends meet or to gather extra holiday cash. Our hope is to scatter our seeds at the Christmas season in order to see a return to our love language throughout the rest of the year. During the final part of the calendar year we may end up seeing a return that is greater than all the other weeks and months we go out and serve folks. Kwa kweli, I think it will pale by comparison. Let’s make the most of what we have before us. Let’s connect the dots and see what God is up to right around us. That will happen as we serve with all our hearts and lay caution aside.