GET CONNECTED with our CHURCH FAMILY … responding to human need

Friday, February 16

Philippians 4:1-9 (ESV)

Therefore, my brothers and sisters, whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, my beloved. I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord. Yes, and I ask you also, my loyal companion, help these women, for they have struggled beside me in the work of the gospel, together with Clement and the rest of my coworkers, whose names are in the book of life. Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. As for the things that you have learned and received and heard and noticed in me, do them, and the God of peace will be with you.


When I think about Jesus’s ministry and our Lenten theme this year, Love for Others: Hospitality and Service, I immediately think of Miriam’s Kitchen in downtown Washington. Lewinsville has supported Miriam’s Kitchen since it first opened in 1983, by providing volunteers and resources. In the early years I volunteered for their breakfast program and for a few years my Christ Care group volunteered for the dinner program. Each time I am at Miriam’s Kitchen I observe the true meaning of “love for others” as staff and volunteers interact with the homeless guests. Each guest is treated with respect and love. I often took advantage of the opportunity to sit with the guests and share stories after the work of preparing and serving the meal was over.

This fall, at Good Samaritan Day, I learned about a new way to support Miriam’s Kitchen. The guests at Miriam’s Kitchen use 800 to 1000 coffee packets a day and assembling these packets is a big volunteer need. In November I invited my three elementary-age grandchildren to help me assemble the packets. While we worked we talked about what it meant to be homeless and a little about the people who use these packets. It struck me as we talked that we express our love for others when we share stories of human need.  Philippians 4 reminds us that we have “nothing what so ever to be worried about” and therefore we are, as Richard Rohr explains, “free to serve others.” I can think of no more important Lenten lesson than to look for ways to “see as God sees” and “act as Jesus” does.


Dear Lord, open our eyes to opportunities to see as you see, recognize Christ in others, and serve as Jesus does. When we allow you to inhabit our senses, we can more fully open ourselves to others. Remind us during this Lenten season that the assurance of your peace will be with us as we do the work of seeing and serving others.

Carol Kaffenberger


Richard Rohr, “Free to Serve Others,” Center for Action & Contemplation (1-22-21)

Miriam’s Kitchen

Volunteering at Miriam’s Kitchen

Philippians 4 in music by Debra Arnott