And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written:
“How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” Romans 10:15
How many of us have drawn closer to God because someone shared their faith story with us? I certainly have!
The word “Go” in the Great Commission found in Matthew 28:18-20 is an imperative verb Jesus gives to the disciples (and us) as a command. Go make disciples! Connection Ministries takes this command seriously because God gives hope and transforms lives when we act on it.
Christy’s family moved to Indianapolis 2 ½ years ago, leaving behind a family and church that were important, especially for her adult son Steven, who has autism. She shared with me, “We had a church family that embraced him and included him both within church activities and outside the church doors. We were truly blessed.”
The church they found in Indianapolis was friendly and kind to Steven. Christy told me, “They went as far as bringing in someone who helps churches develop ministries for children with disabilities. All this was so great. But for us, not very helpful…”
Aaron, who was working with their church told her about Connection Ministries. Christy said, “I was in sort of a desperate frame of mind…We as special needs parents are always trying to help our kids be accepted. We want them to be a part of things too, just like everyone else. It can be so hard at times.”
She went on to say, “The response from Connection Ministries was overwhelming…It was like God opened the floodgates, and blessings came pouring out. Don responded to my email right away! It wasn’t just a token acknowledgement, or a ‘let me point you in this direction’ kind of a response. He asked if he could meet with me and my son! Yes, he wanted to meet Steven, too! We met with Don and Linda at a local Starbucks…and the greeting from them was warm and inviting.”
“For the next hour I was able to share our lives…But the one thing that impressed me the most, and still brings tears to my eyes, is that Don and Linda talked directly to Steven and took an interest in his life. To watch them engage him in conversation was something I can’t quite put into words. It was so clear to me how much they genuinely love our loved ones who are special.”
“When it was all said and done, we were able to get Steven plugged into 2 Friendship groups…I remember thinking, ‘My faith has been renewed. There is something out there in the Church for my son.’ ”
At our Summer Friendship Gatherings this year we learned how the Samaritan woman ran to her village to tell everyone about Jesus! As a result, many believed because of what she told them. Aaron simply told Christy about Connection Ministries. Now, Christy and her family have a renewed faith and are part of an authentic Christian community.
With a new Friendship group season starting, now is a perfect time for all of us to Go make a disciple! Perhaps you can visit your church’s Friendship group and invite a friend to join you. Is there is a family in your neighborhood with an adult son/daughter with a disability, or is there is a nearby group home? Go, introduce yourself, and tell them about your church’s Friendship group! Also, tell them about Connection Ministries. Let’s not keep it a secret!
God adds eternal value to the work of Connection Ministries. Consider making a gift today, or even recurring gifts.
Connection Ministries relies entirely on the generosity of God’s people. Every gift, large or small, moves us closer to our vision that embrace adults with intellectual disabilities, families and caregivers in Christian community.
Please consider ways you might Go make a disciple (or make a gift) today!
Serving Christ with you,
The Connection Ministries Team
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