More than Memories

This morning as I swung through my local grocery to buy food items for Taking it to the Streets, numerous parental thoughts swept through my mind. Of what’s worked, what hasn’t, and how God has multiplied Steve and my efforts, molding our daughter day-by-day.

I’ve got a lot to say, but little time to say it, so I’ll leave you instead with a catchy slogan, hoping you’ll chew on it and that perhaps God will use it to direct and strengthen your family.

A family that serves together stays together.

Tonight we will go as a family–united in purpose and love–to share God’s grace and truth with Omaha’s homeless and working poor. While there, I will get to see my daughter’s faith and character blossom as she sits with “the least of these.” I will get to see my man humble himself to serve others. United, we will get to experience the incomprehensible love of Christ pouring through us.

The drive over gives us a chance to talk about heart issues as we talk about who and what we might encounter. The drive home provides an opportunity to discuss all that God did while we were there.

Our Fridays have become special–priceless. A glue that binds us. It’s also become a training ground for our daughter–an opportunity for her to put her life into perspective, to develop compassion, to be part of positive change. This inward development has spilled over into every other area of her life.

Each week, we give but a few hours of our time, but a small portion of our resources, yet we gain so much in return. As a mom, my greatest blessing is seeing my daughter live out her faith–not just at Taking it to the Streets, but where ever she goes, seeing others through a lens saturated with compassion. (Because you can’t spend time among the broken and leave unchanged.)

So, to those parents out there, here’s my challenge.

Family time is crucial. Our kids need it, crave it. Each interaction is an opportunity to connect with our children’s heart, but it is also a time to mold their heart.

What if, one Friday a month, instead of spending say $50 or $60 going out to eat, you visited a soup kitchen and used that same money to help provide a nutritious meal to a family in need. (It’s not just the alcoholics and druggies who frequent these places. Each Friday, we see young families–mom’s with kiddos, pregnant ladies.)

What kind of memories might that create? What kind of training might that provide?

And for those living in the Omaha, NE area, come join us! We’re there almost every Friday. And bring bananas or a jug of milk. 🙂 Tonight I’ll be doing a monologue of the Samaritan woman–a woman riddled with shame who found love and acceptance in the Savior.


  1. Jennifer, you’re so right: family time is crucial. The God and family roots combo is one beautiful foundation for a child to be raised upon… stated by someone who lacked both in her young childhood.

      1. Sure it was, but honestly, I’m saying what I’m saying to commend you and your husband–and all the other parents–who shower their children with love, guidance, and of course, God’s wisdom.

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