Welcome to Heart & Home
July 11, 2020
This week’s Summer Act of Service features our long term mission in Uganda. On Sunday, you will hear stories of transformation from missioners who have traveled from Crossroads to Uganda and from students who have been impacted from those same missioners. Whether a missioner or a Ugandan the relationships have been transforming.

When we originally planned around Summer Acts of Service and our annual trip in August, our thoughts were to collect books to take with us to establish a small lending library since reading books for all ages are hard to come by. With the reality of our next trip now being a year off we asked Esther what might be useful right now.

The lock down in Uganda began in late March. Fortunately in May Crossroads was able to send some funds so that each of our sponsored students’ families were able to receive a supply of maize flour, beans, sugar, salt and soap to help sustain them while they were home. Esther’s organization VOACO has been able to purchase some property for farming in Eastern Uganda. Over the years, as it is getting more established they have been able to plant a variety of vegetable crops and raise goats and some chickens.

Esther suggested that a very useful service project would be to help with the poultry project. Eggs are very nutritious but are often not a common part of the diet for those living in rural villages. By growing the poultry project eggs can be produced and provided to the local families to supplement their diets. Eventually Esther hopes to build a new and bigger chicken house but for now we can help increase the production by helping to purchase chicks, and feed. Good quality chicks cost less than $1 each.

We are asking Crossroads families to consider giving $5 towards the poultry project. Students and children at home can earn the money by doing chores, serving at home. You may make a donation online or mail your donation (made out to Crossroads, designated for Uganda).
Acts of Service
Reflection Guide
Before you SERVE with action, begin by going through the reflection questions below. We go inward to reflect and then we go outward to serve.
Acts 16:6-10  (CEB)
Paul and his companions traveled throughout the regions of Phrygia and Galatia because the Holy Spirit kept them from speaking the word in the province of Asia. When they approached the province of Mysia, they tried to enter the province of Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus wouldn’t let them. Passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas instead. A vision of a man from Macedonia came to Paul during the night. He stood urging Paul, “Come over to Macedonia and help us!” Immediately after he saw the vision, we prepared to leave for the province of Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to proclaim the good news to them.
SERVE: As we can see from this week’s scripture, God can lead us all over the world to serve. In 1999, God led Crossroads to Uganda Africa to help provide education to our brothers and sisters there. Crossroads has provided many Ugandans with the opportunity to make life altering changes for a better future. This week we will be donating funds for a self-sustaining poultry project. These chickens will provide much needed protein in the form of eggs and meat for families supported by Crossroads. 
Reflection: Many times, when windows of opportunities close on us, we get frustrated. We have all experienced a situation when our plans were altered because of circumstance. We see this in the mission of the early church in this passage. They wanted to go to different places, but God kept them from going there because God had greater plans for the church.
General Reflection Questions:
  • Since we will not be traveling to Uganda this year, some will be serving by supporting the poultry project. Plans have changed. How would we react differently if we saw changed plans as a new opportunity? 
  • With all of the uncertainty in the world right now, how are you using your time to serve those around you?
Reflection Questions for Families with Students:
  • Doing a small chore around the house to earn money to contribute to the Poultry Project will go a long way to helping a community have fresh eggs. Have you ever considered that serving one person can actually serve many others? 
  • Even in Uganda, the COVID Crisis is affecting families and students. What might be some similar ways we are all affected?
Reflections for Families with Children:

  • Change can be hard for us all to adapt, but especially for young children. Ask your kids about how their summer plans have changed and how that makes them feel.
  • As a family, create a summer bucket list. Compare the activities to ways you would have enjoyed the summer prior to Covid. Even if they are more simplified, doesn't mean they are less fun for your family.
  • Ask your kids if they would like to help raise money for the children in Uganda, by doing chores around the house, and serving in your home.

Prayer: God, often times when our plans get changed, we react with frustration and anger. Help us today to look at changes as an opportunity to share Your love with those around us. Give us eyes to see and hearts to understand Your plan for our lives. Help us to know that You won’t lead us anywhere You don’t want us. Amen.
For Families with Children
Crossroads Kids Bible Story
This week's bible story is from Acts 16:6-10. Watch this video of the scripture. It tells of a time that God called to Paul, to help others in need and to spread the good news that they are not alone. We are reminded that God's love is for everyone.

Here is a prayer to share as a family: Oh Lord, give us eyes to see, ears to hear, minds to understand, hearts to believe, and mouths to tell others of Your love and salvation. Amen.
This Week's Highlighted Resources
The Color of Compromise: An Ongoing Conversation
It's not too late to join us for 10 weekly online sessions (Wednesdays through August 19 from 7:00-8:30pm) featuring large group presentation and small group conversation focused on the history and legacy of racial injustice in our nation and the church. Through listening, learning, and sharing in conversation, we will reflect on both the painful reality of racism and meaningful steps toward greater levels of justice and reconciliation.

Pastor Jim Melson leads this weekly series based on the book  The Color of Compromise  by Jamar Tisby who is an African American speaker, theologian, writer and president of The Witness: A Black Christian Collective. The book is a challenging and insightful resource to help all of us learn and grow in the call of Jesus to racial justice and reconciliation.  If you can't attend each week, you can watch a recording of the teaching at your convenience.  Please read chapter six for the next session on July 15th. To listen to past teachings and to sign up for the ongoing conversation, click  here .