We thought our subdivision was anti-social until we got a new puppy for Christmas 2009. She is a 4 lb. Yorkie mix. People came out of the woodwork to greet us as we walked each day in warm weather. I discovered it is only our block that seems unfriendly. Riley has become our missionary dog. This past Christmas the Lord laid it on my heart to be intentional about reaching out to our neighbors … so once again I took Christmas cards and goodies/gifts to 18 of our neighbors including our mail lady. The Lord told me not to stop there … but to continue on for each holiday all this year. I call it my “Neighborhood Project” … pretty simple.
I put a Scripture inside each card and try to be creative with whatever gift I am sharing each holiday. So I did Valentine’s Day and now Easter. I have received notes back in our mailbox, some goodies in return, very surprised, but happy, folks answering their doors when I stop over … I am praying that our neighbors will ultimately experience the sweet fragrance of Jesus with each kindness I pass on. That they would be drawn to Him … open doors for me to pray with them … and a wonderful hallelujah would be to introduce them to my Savior!
Here are some pictures to illustrate what I have done so far since Christmas … photos of Christmas, Valentine’s Day & Easter … and also one from my wall display, a blown-up version of my neighborhood “map” with the names of each family I am reaching out to … plus on the left side of the poster is a picture of our missionary dog Riley. I also have a larger size map to show the folks at the Senior Adult Rally what I actually do on a smaller scale inside of my kitchen cupboard. Every time we meet a new neighbor … or learn more info. about them … I add it to their little house square. Example: when I discover they have children and/or their names I add that to their square. Maybe they have a pet … or love a particular hobby … I will add that, too. It gives me personal things to remember about them in future conversations to show I care. And also helps me when I pray specifically for them. I don’t know if you want to add this or not but it better explains what that home-made map was on the wall. I wrote a small article about this in Pray! magazine when we lived in Nevada.
I hope it gives you an idea of what I am doing to be intentional … and maybe give someone else even better ideas.
Three Rivers Baptist Association