I would start with people who are doing it already. Go find the open doors; a chaplain in the local prison, the lady that helps our at the local food pantry, the guy who is always hanging out with the homeless… these champions are out there all the time. Join them in the journey. Take advantage that they have the connections already… then, find your sweet spot and go to town.
That’s what I have been doing. I connected with a lady who has been ministering in the local prison for more than 17 years. She was so excited to have help. So I helped. And as I started to befriend the inmates and get to know the prison staff, I earned my way into having my own weekly workshop with more than 40 guys from all different walks of life.
I did the same with my non-profit, I found people who have been doing relief work before me and I said, “Hey, can I get involved? How can I help get funds, and resources, and workers?” Of course, they loved the question and in turn helped me grow in my own journey.
Unfortunately, local churches get so good at creating local church events that we forget to engage the local church outside the building. But trust me on this, the church is vibrant on the margins! Jesus is with the prostitutes, in the local strip club, hanging out with refugees and loving kids in the foster care system… you just have to join him there. And the open door is usually the silent heroes who have gone before us.
So be intentional. Book time in your schedule to hang out with Jesus where Jesus is. He told us already in Matthew 25 what his weekly schedule looks like:
- Monday: Giving water to the thirsty.
- Tuesday: Food to the hungry.
- Wednesday: Clothing to the naked.
- Thursday: Visiting the prisoner.
- Friday: Welcoming the stranger.
- The weekend: With the least of these.
PS. While you’re there, learn from the least. Don’t “bring Jesus to them” realize that Jesus is them… and act accordingly.
Humility is the way go (and I promise, it will be rewarding and fun).