For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.
Luke 19:10

Friday, March 4, 2011

A Work in Your Own Home

No major expense. No rentals. No travel. Just a little bit of space in your home and your time and some popcorn or fresh cookies and a soft drink.

Ron Wahls had the idea or the burden or the exercise two or three years ago. 10 came. 15 came. 25 came. It may have maxed out at 30 or so. And now it is continued each Wednesday by Shad and Cynthia Sluiter in Postville, Iowa.

It's simple but it requires spiritual commitment - your time and effort. But beyond that - not much else is required. You do not need a luxurious home with fine ornaments and plush carpets or shining hardwood floors. You don't have to have the faucets sparkling and every inch of dust removed from your furnishings. They won't notice any of that. They just come, plunk down their school backpacks and pull up a chair around the table and wait for you to start. They're not stressing over how immaculate your home is or how meticulous a housekeeper you are. They are more interested in the care you are showing them.

No big program is needed and you don't have to have your degree at a theological seminary. You don't have to be an amazing public speaker. But you will need a loving heart and a desire to share God's Truth with young teens.

I happened to be visiting the Sluiter home on Wednesday with Brian Kember. We had a nice lunch together and then we were given a tour of multicultural Postville. Shortly after three their front door opened and in came two or three young people. They plopped their school stuff on the floor and threw off their jackets and went to the dining room table. Then a few more arrived. School was over and before they went home, they dropped into the Sluiter's for a Bible Class. They come every Wednesday. Sometimes there are 8 show up or 10 or 15.
No singing or anything. Brian Kember was the guest and he talked to them about priorities in life and the importance of seeking first the Kingdom of God. He started off by getting them to write down five things they'd like to do in their lifetime. Then he used an object lesson to get his point across. Salvation comes first and all these other things can follow. They went over Matthew 6:33. They had a nice discussion. 
Then freshly popped popcorn prepared by Cynthia was put on the table and they loved it. I can't remember whether a soft drink was offered or not. (I just checked the pictures - looks like kool-aid.) Were there cookies? I didn't notice. But what impressed me was the simplicity of it all. A work that most anyone could do if they happen to be home one day a week when kids are walking by their house on the way home from school. One hour a week.
How would you advertise it? What works for you may not work for someone else. If you know a few of the kids in your neighborhood - it could start by word of mouth. Or a little sign in the school. Or a tidy sandwich board outside your home on the sidewalk: 

Youth Bible Club
Always Free. In this home.
Popcorn and Cookies
3-4pm Wednesdays
Come with your parent's permission.

Add your comments below if you have tried something similar to this or if you would like to make additional suggestions.

If you would like to contact Shad and Cynthia Sluiter for more precise details or Ron Wahls - click on their names to email them.

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