Why I Serve
“Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.”
— Hebrews 10:24 (NLT)
“Acts of good works” is a mantra that gets thrown around in Christian circles. What does it mean to you? Do you believe it is like a merit badge of honor, that you must do good works to earn salvation?
Maybe your thought is that we are saved by grace alone, and good works have no bearing on our salvation. Paul writes in Ephesians 2:8-10, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
To serve, you only need a heart full of grace!
My simple interpretation is that by grace we are saved; and once saved, we should live our life in obedience to God and His plan for good works.
As Jesus redeemed my life more than a year ago, He provided me purpose, grace, mercy, hope and a love in my heart like I have never known before. This unconditional love has filled me with the desire to share God’s Word and to let others know how deeply I have been changed. It is such a privilege to share my time, talents, resources and caring nature.
My discipleship has lead me to serve at Grace in small ways but also to serve local community ministries. I want to share briefly these organizations I do volunteer work with each month:
Faith in Action is a volunteer-based organization providing homebound seniors with free non-medical services to help promote their independence, dignity and quality of life. This outreach is part of the Washington Regional Foundation and serves clients in Washington and Benton counties. I spend from 4-6 hours a month helping transport seniors who no longer drive to doctor appointments, shopping and social outings.
Cooperative Emergency Outreach (CEO) is a Fayetteville organization that provides help when a financial emergency occurs due to circumstances such as illness, job loss or natural disaster. CEO offers food, gasoline vouchers, clothing vouchers, utility assistance, rental assistance and prescription vouchers. The Coop is made up of churches and individuals whose mission it is to help the people in the community when emergencies arise. This outreach ministry is fully staffed by volunteers. I work as an interviewer 4-6 hours a month.
Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) Association supports and promotes court-appointed volunteer advocacy so every abused or neglected child in the United States can be safe, have a permanent home. A CASA volunteer is appointed by a judge to watch over and advocate for abused and neglected children, to make sure they don’t get lost in the legal system. I volunteer in Madison County 6-10 hours a month.
I am not sharing this to be boastful but to let you see how my walk with God has changed my life and the many others I touch in my local outreach in the community. Recently, He spoke to my heart and gave me a path to help Grace Church “tap in” to do good works in our local community. My new leadership role is to guide and develop Grace Church’s partnerships in local outreach.
My mission is to engage our church body to put our Christian faith into action through service to our community. The challenge is to find the opportunities to provide even the busiest people a way to help others. To serve, you only need a heart full of grace!
As Booker T. Washington said, “Living is the art of loving. Loving is the art of caring. Caring is the art of sharing. Sharing is the art of living. If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.”
Teri Naylor is a Walmart retiree who loves theatre, music and anything with the arts. Teri traveled the world with her husband and enjoys new and exciting adventures. As a new chapter of life begins, she is learning a deeper love of God and experiencing more spiritual adventures.