Fishers UMC Blog

There Your Heart Will Be

Proverbs 4:23  “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”
Proverbs 23:26  “My son, give me your heart and let your eyes delight in my ways.”
In the course of scheduling events and activities at Fishers UMC, I meet many different people from all walks of life.  I’ve been blessed to be welcomed into different cultures from people who have traveled to America from half-way around the globe.  They come here for so many reasons, I’m sure I couldn’t begin to list them all. 
One thing I hear above all else is, they love this country; they love it with all their hearts.  They love the opportunities and freedoms they experience.  They have left family, friends and their homeland in order to make this their home.  Honestly, I’m not sure that I could do that.  They know that “the land of the free and the home of the brave” are so much more than words to a song.  I believe they see much more clearly than some of us, just exactly how wonderful this admittedly flawed country is, while we – those who are American by birth – sometimes take it for granted.
They love that they are welcomed into a United Methodist church with such grace and sense of community.  On one particular weekend, a lady – a leader of the group that was here – expressed that she loves that we share the same values that Jesus preached so long ago – peace, love, humility, grace, community – feelings that flow straight from the heart.  She and I marveled that even though we come from worlds apart, we all feel a similar love for Christ and His people… the heart of His family.
I’m blessed to have spent so much time with very different people – sports groups of all shapes and sizes; moms planning birthday parties for their children; young women planning a wedding or bridal shower for their best friend; parents, who want their children to be a part of Fishers UMC, to learn from our Preschool, our Upward program, Vacation Bible School, and children’s ministry straight through to Junior and Senior High.  And beyond. 
I’ve learned that no matter what we may look like on the outside, many of us share similar values in our hearts. 
From my favorite book, the book of Matthew:  “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”  Matthew 6:21 
Kim Manka
Administrative Assistant & Facility Scheduler
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Making a Difference—One Person at a Time

Last month, thirty-eight people of all ages gathered on an unseasonably cold Saturday morning to simply be love in action for a senior neighbor in our community.  They scraped paint, power washed an ENTIRE house, prepared flowerbeds, delivered care packages they had assembled, and the list goes on… I went out to visit those who were serving, feeling a bit sheepish that I had gotten them into this endeavor on such a chilly and damp day.  However, as I walked up to each group, they expressed disappointment that the weather was preventing them from doing more, and that they were enjoying their time getting to know their new neighbor.  

Fishers UMC partnered with Shepherd’s Center of Hamilton County to give us an opportunity to bless seniors in our community, but also to build relationships, as it is in the context of relationship that lives are transformed.  Besides serving the group shared a light breakfast together; it provided a chance to talk and fellowship, to make a connection.  

Below are some of the stories that were a result of this time together. The first describes the experience of a small group that served:

The Seekers Sunday school class signed up for the day of caring with the hope of establishing a continuing friendship with a community member. Eight class members with varying skills, even a few brandishing power tools, showed up to weed, clean out flowerbeds, plant geraniums & mulch. It was obvious that the homeowner, a woman who'd had some recent health problems, had once taken lots of pride in her yard. It was easy to sense her frustration at not being able to attack the problem herself. She began watching the work from her windows, but as we asked more questions on what she'd like done, she decided to put on a jacket & supervise from the driveway. The suggestion that some trees could be trimmed brought a big smile. The happy homeowner was able to give specific directions as she sat on the seat of her walker. Having lost control of some parts of her life, it was clear to see her joy in having a pretty yard, again.  We will return to help & learn from this sweet lady!

Another participant wrote, “In the short time we knew so much about her and she may be interested in coming to church but does not drive anymore.”  Both she, and another volunteer, have since felt a tug to begin bringing their new friends to worship with them on Sundays.  

Next is a thank you note from Rebecca describing how the day impacted her life.

Dear Congregation of Fishers United Methodist Church,

            On Saturday, May 14th, I was the grateful recipient of your outreach ministries who connected with me through The Shepherd Center of Hamilton County. Five grace filled young women came to my home bearing an essentials gift basket and helped me with a variety of tasks from fixing my closet doors to weeding and preparing my garden, among other things. They worked diligently in the freezing cold to reach out and help me showing the love of Christ in action in the world through the good hearts and willing hands of these lovely ladies. And handsome Max brought me a lovely card decorated with his own original artwork.

Such goodwill is remembered by God and so appreciated by those of us in need of help. God bless each of them, your ministries and your whole congregation with His gracious love. Thank you all!

The heart of outreach ministry is engaging with people in our community, whether it is being love in action or providing a cookout at the park.  Simply and naturally building relationships with members of our community is nothing extraordinary.  It is an opportunity to express care and gratitude for our neighbors—to welcome them into relationship.  If you missed the first Day of Caring, no worries, we will be back at it again in the fall helping rake leaves and prepare yards for winter.  In the meantime, come to Fun Friday at Holland Park July 15th starting at 5:30pm for a cookout to bless and connect with our neighbors.   Hope to see you there!

Oh, and I can’t forget a huge THANK YOU to all who served!  Well done!

Susan Hobson
Outreach Ministry Coordinator
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