Come by for a visit

Dropping By For A Visit

Don’t you miss the days when people would visit and sit for a spell?

family reunion
cousin, aunt,sousin, me, my husband, my daughter
2014 Dawson (my) family reunion

I do. I think that is why I want a front porch so badly. I miss the days of sitting on the porch with friends and family just resting and sharing time together.

These days we never drop in on people and thus our lives remain lonely and we never learn from one another. No one is a close friend anymore. We are all just acquaintances.

Remember When?

Even our families no longer stop by for a visit. I remember going for a drive and stopping in on my mom’s aunt and uncle. I don’t know how she did it. But my Aunt Mary must have had a 6th sense that someone was coming by because it seemed about 5-10 minutes after we arrived, she presented a delicious cake. Besides the delicious cake and good conversation, we gained the chance to actually know our cousins. If we had not stopped in occasionally, I would never have known my mother’s cousins, nor my second cousins.

I remember that our family friends would take turns having everyone over after the football games. These were all high school friends of my parents. Of course, they all had kids the same age as my siblings and me. Boy, did we have a grand time together?

As an adult, many of us would head out to a restaurant after Sunday Evening Worship. We seldom to that either.

We Are Too Busy

The truth is, we have become so busy that we never slow down long enough to just visit with anyone. The Bible instructs us to practice hospitality. The Book of Hebrews suggests that we should not forsake meeting together.  This scripture is usually used to encourage church attendance, but the early church met together in homes also sharing meals and encouraging one another. This is where we really get to know one another and share in each other’s lives. We can attend church, come in and go out, without truly interacting with people. But meeting in our homes and eating together, that is when we become more than acquaintances.

Here’s the Challenge

So, have you had a visitor or drop by on someone unexpectantly? When did you last invite someone into your home? We may need to make a concerted effort to fellowship together.

Meeting Around the Table

A few years ago, a new Women’s conference erupted into the scene called IF Gathering. They have developed the idea that encouragement comes from around the table. They encourage us to have a once a month meeting around the table. Invite 5 or 6 people to share a simple meal and have a real conversation.

They feel that this is so important that they provide menu ideas and questions to ask each other. It’s called IF: Table. You can Check it out here.

Table games are an excellent way to increase comradery. Try this awesome game with some friends called Life Stories. You will have a great time learning new things about one another.

You can learn more about mentoring around the table with this book written by a friend. Coming Alongside: Blessed to be a Blessing

I’m ready for a visit. Come on by! I’ll make a pound cake.

Mandy Farmer

I participating in Kate Motaung’s Five Minute Fridays where we take a prompt and write for five minutes.

Come by for a visit and sit a spell. #mentoring #visit Click To Tweet

Pastor appreciation

UNAPPRECIATED ~ 3 Actions to Change Your Heart

A Bottle of Bath Wash.

Who doesn’t enjoy the wonderful smell and the softness obtained from using it?

But it seemed precious little payment for the hours on end that I spent learning and perfecting the wedding music chosen for this wedding and the entire weekend my husband and I gave for rehearsal, decorating, flower deliveries and, of course, the wedding itself.

Have you ever felt unappreciated?

It’s easy to fall into the trap. We work hard to do our best and no one notices, maybe they even criticize our hard work. I’ve experienced that before!

But, remember my pastor’s wife, Charlotte, who taught me so much in the beginning? She brought home the truth one day while we were talking. She did it gently by suggesting that I make the time and hard work my gift to the bride and groom.

The truth of the matter is that it was my attitude that needed adjusting.

The big question is, “Who am I serving?”

God’s Word says,

So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31

You see, I had my priorities upside down.

I wasn’t doing all that preparation out of love for the couple (or God). I was doing it for my glory. To receive praise or a few dollars. And when it didn’t pay off, I was upset. No wonder I felt unappreciated.

It was time for an attitude adjustment. I needed a heart transplant. My heart of self-service needed changing out for a heart of service.

As we come to the end of October (Pastor’s Appreciation Month), perhaps some of us are needing a heart transplant. Maybe we feel unappreciated this year. It is possible we feel what was given was too little and too late causing us to wonder if it was all quickly put together at the last minute.

pastor appreciation
photo credit: Canva modified by Mandy

Here are a few ways that I have found to make an attitude adjustment.

Three Steps to Avoid Feeling Unappreciated

Look Up

Look up to God Realize how much He loves me and does for me. Thank Him for all the blessings He has given me even when I don’t deserve it.

Look Around

Look around at all those who are serving with me. This would include associates, widowed pastors/spouses, retired ministers, and their spouse. Send a handwritten card or note expressing your appreciation for them and what they do. Remember that joy comes in giving more than in receiving.

Make Pastor Appreciation Month truly a Pastor’s Appreciation of Others.

Look Back

Remember those who have paved the way for me. Write a note to the pastors and wives in my life that have encouraged me along the way.

Also, don’t forget the leaders above me. In our church, there is a District Superintendent that guides all the churches in our state. I’m sure he would accept a little appreciation, as well.

Next year, try entering the month of appreciation doing these things. I think you will find a greater feeling of joy over your situation.

Feeling Grateful!

Mandy Signature
Savannah, GA
Notes in the Mail

4 Simple and Easy Ways to Get Those Notes in the Mail

Originally posted on GGMandy dot com in her series “Treasure Trove for Ministry

There’s nothing better than going to the mailbox, pulling out the mail, and finding an honest to goodness note from someone among the bills.

4 Simple Ways

It’s becoming an oddity in this day of social media. But tell the truth, isn’t it a blessing to receive a handwritten note in the mail? To me, it just seems much more special than a shout out on Facebook. Somehow, that is just too easy. But stopping and writing a note takes thought and says you really care.

My top spiritual gift is encouragement.

I have loved to write notes to people most of my life. Just a couple sentences to say, “Hey, I thought of you today.”  You have no idea how often it has been a blessing to someone. A kind word just at the right time.

From as early as they could hold a pencil, I have required that my children write some type of a Thank you note when they receive a gift. People really still do appreciate getting a thank you. Somehow, the world has told us that writing a note and putting it in the mail is no longer necessary. [I beg to differ.]

the world has told us that writing a note and putting it in the mail is no longer necessary. [I beg to differ.] #thankyou Click To Tweet

“thank you’s”

“glad to see you”

“how ya doing?”

“Happy Birthday”

Get Those Notes in the Mail

  1. At the beginning of each month, take a calendar and randomly write the name of different people each day. Then during your quiet time each morning, pray for that person and write a quick note to them. I did this all through college. I didn’t even have to pay for postage then because I could mail them through the college post office for free!
  2. If you have lots of thank you’s to write, set a deadline. Count the number of gifts you need to send thank you’s for, divide by the number of days till your deadline, then write that many thank you’s each evening as you watch the news or your favorite program. You can get them done during the commercials! I did this after my wedding with 200+ gifts and I had them all done within 2 months.
  3. If you are crafty, start making your own cards. You’ll be so proud to mail them to friends. Every so often, a friend and I get together and make the most beautiful cards. It’s a lot of fun and great fellowship. Some years, I save the Christmas cards that I receive in the mail. Then after the first of the year, I create a new card from their Christmas card. I read the card and say a prayer for the family and mail the newly made card with a note inside.
  4. Shut-ins are especially glad to receive notes in the mail. A few years back, I realized that one day, I would be that forgotten widow of a pastor. So I started writing notes to all the widows of pastors in our district. I thought, maybe, the thought will be returned one day. Guess what …. they started writing me back! How awesome. A gift that gives back!
handmade cards 
Notes in the mail
a couple handmade cards my friend and I made.

I’ve been writing this month expressly to ministers and those in leadership. Let me emphasize to you… an occasional note to your people will bring forth dividends. Send birthday cards, handwrite a note to your visitors or students. It really doesn’t take much of your time. But it DOES show that your care. Give it a try.

Mandy Farmer
A handwritten note brings forth dividends. #encourage #mail Click To Tweet
Linking up with Kate Motaung and the #fmfparty Community today.  Five Minute Friday gives us the chance to dive right in and share what He puts on our hearts! Click here to read what others have to say about MAIL
FMF: Mail
Five Minute Friday
 The FMF lodown: The gathering happens on Twitter on Thursday nights & then we write our hearts out & hit publish all over the interwebs on Thursday & Friday (& sometimes on Tuesdays!) It’s where we encourage & uplift… where we share prayer requests & praise reports… where we talk about food & friends & we find support & kindred hearts. It’s where we are reminded that life is good & God is good & we’re not alone… & then we all write for five minutes flat, a flash mob of wordsmiths letting our hearts & our fingers do the talking  & we hit publish before we can second-guess it all away.