My birthday was special for many reasons, but in particular it was special because I had the joy of serving food at the Lord's Lighthouse. It's a brief service followed by a meal every Sunday afternoon for the homeless at my church. Joel and I teamed up. He would hold the tray of plates and I would pass them out.
Before the food was served Aimee, a long time volunteer and beautifully open hearted woman, spoke to the group of 200 concerning Jesus' saying "I am the bread of life". It's a message that could have sounded trite to a group of people so aware of their lack, and desperate need, but she addressed them as friends. Many of them truly are her friends and not just a "ministry project". God's presence of love was tangible in the room as she spoke from her heart, which was ultimately God's heart. The message was not one bit insensitive, but literally made me feel that the deepest parts of my very soul and longings were being filled with Christ. By the rapt attention Aimee easily held for twenty minutes and the looks on faces across the room, I knew the souls of the homeless were also being fed.
There is no place I would have rather been on my birthday. In the tangible presence of God. God's presence was filling my soul and the soul and needs of those around me. I felt alive and happy. To me it was special that my first time serving at the Lord's Lighthouse marked the end of a rather hard, transitional year, but the beginning of a new year. And I believe it's also telling, that my new year will be filled with serving the Lord in ways which I have longed to and with gifts I have been waiting to share. I will be returning to the Lord's Lighthouse again and again with an open heart of worship, working hands, and perhaps in the near future, a guitar, and some songs written for those broken and needing Christ to fill their souls, myself included. I think the Lord's Lighthouse coordinator is open to that.