Eggs and Encouragement

Our class was coming over for lunch, but my roommates and I hadn’t had time to clean off the eggs a vandal had splattered across the front of our house several days before. Someone asked about the problem during the meal. Then another guest volunteered, “Let’s clean it off for them!” After we ate, our guests hastily organized two work crews: one to wash the dishes, and the other to pull out ladders, brushes, and buckets to scrub the hardened egg off the siding and windows.

I’ll never forget how grateful I felt as our friends tackled a most unpleasant job -- and turned it into an activity that built relationships as they worked together. Is there something your group could do to serve your leader or another member? Here are some ideas to get you started:

Pray for the people in your group every day, not just during your group meetings.

Put feet to your prayers. Did someone ask for prayer amid a hectic schedule? Lighten her load by delivering a big pot of chili and a dozen muffins -- or anything else that can be quickly reheated for a calm meal.

Mail a short note (two or three sentences will do) to someone in your group, telling why he or she enriches your life.

Keep confidences. Few gifts are as meaningful as trust.

Speak up. When others share their insights during Bible study, respond with comments like “Good in-sight!” or “Wow, I’d never noticed that before.”

Make dates. Show enthusiasm for spending time with group members outside regular meetings. Suggest lunch, a visit to a local museum, or a game of tennis.

Share a talent. For example, appoint yourself as the class photographer and begin an album of memories.

This article originally appeared in Discipleship Journal. Reprinted by permission.

Sue Kline and Susan Maycinik
© 2006 General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists