Let Your Light Shine

Volunteers fan our spark to a flame. 

A local pastor is fond of saying, “For God so loved the world that He sent His one and only Son. And for God so loved YOUR sphere of influence that HE sent YOU.”

The pastor is right, of course, his idiom echoing the sentiments of Psalm 139 that remind us we were each uniquely and deliberately knit together in our mothers’ wombs with specific purpose and intent. To that end, our theme this year as the staff team at Care Net of Puget Sound is “Be Radiant” with a special emphasis on the subtext of “this little light of mine.” We each have a role to play and a light to carry.

Creating a culture of life begins in our own homes, in the way we foster transparency and encourage openness as we communicate the importance of health relationships and sexual integrity with our own children. At Care Net, we realize that even this can be a tall order, and we’re here to help you with it. Many people know that our Smart Program staff and volunteers go out into the local schools to educate kids about the birds and the bees, but fewer people know that these programs are also available to church youth groups and even homeschool co-ops.

Do you have a gift of communicating with young people in a winsome way? Do you have a passion to help them find confidence as they navigate the awkward years of hormones and mood swings? If so, we need you! Our reach into local schools is only as broad as our volunteer network. Today’s youth are in desperate need of godly role models to affirm and inspire them. Are you up for the task?

Equally important is the commitment to create a culture of life within the church. A recent study by Care Net National revealed some serious weak spots within many church cultures that need to be addressed. If an unmarried woman at your church discovered that she was pregnant, would your church leadership know where to send her? Would they know how to communicate hope, restoration, and support to a woman grieving a past abortion? If the answer to either of these questions is “no,” where do you suppose women in these situations might be tempted to turn for assistance?

At Care Net, we have a vested interest in equipping local churches to become safe places for the abortion-vulnerable to turn. We want to raise up life advocates and church liaisons to function as the first line of defense for women in need as they enter churches. Would you be willing to step up to the plate and serve your church in this capacity? There are more than 400 churches in our immediate network alone. Many of them are without official  Care Net liaisons. Would you prayerfully consider filling the void?

This void is not limited to church liaisons, though. The most recent Guttmacher Institute study on the reasons women choose abortion highlighted a sobering reality: 48% of the women interviewed cited “relationship problems” or “a desire to avoid single motherhood” as a primary factor in their choice to abort. Put bluntly: men matter a lot when it comes to a woman’s pregnancy decisions.

It stands to reason, then, that if we care about creating a culture of life, we will do what we can to equip men to function as better support systems for the women they impregnate. Our Men’s Ministry is actively seeking to do just that by coming alongside the men who enter our centers and mentoring them to become good fathers and more confident, supportive communicators and by inviting them to learn about the incredible value they have in God’s eyes as they step up to the challenge of becoming active, intentional fathers. But we need more male mentors to join the fray and serve as role models of the fathers many of these guys never had themselves. If you’re a man who loves the Lord and has some extra time and a heart for young men, might you consider volunteering in the Men’s Ministry at Care Net?

And of course it goes without saying that we are in constant need of client advocates to come alongside women in what are often the scariest or most difficult moments of their lives to offer hope and encouragement.  We need parenting instructors to facilitate group and 1-on-1 classes with our clients. We need nurses to administer ultrasounds and connect with our clients about their pregnancy-related medical concerns. We need drivers to take shifts on our mobile unit. We need videographers to help our marketing team produce quality materials. We need extroverts to make phone calls. We need introverts to organize our boutiques. We need artists to help decorate for special events, and we need people with excess energy to lend their muscles to the set-up and tear-down operations that allow these events in the first place. And we need prayer warriors to faithfully commit to covering our entire ministry in prayer for both protection and progress as we work to shine hope and healing into the Puget Sound region.

In short, if you have a skill or a passion, we are more than likely to have a place for it to thrive. 1 Corinthians 12 reminds us that we are all part of one body that functions in conjunction with the many additional parts, and 1 Peter 4 admonishes us to use our various gifts in the service of others. Care Net of Puget Sound has thrived in this region for more than 35 years now because people like you have seen the need and taken ownership of your role in filling it. If you are among the many faithful people who have generously donated your time and energy to our ministry, we say thank you; the Lord has and continues to use your gifts in more powerful ways than you may ever know this side of heaven.

And to those of you have been feeling that still, small voice tugging at your heartstrings and prompting you to engage on a deeper level, there is no time like the present to get involved. Whether you are a hand or a foot, a mouth or a muscle, we welcome you into our Care Net of Puget Sound body and are eager to see how the Lord will use you as we work together in His service.

To learn more about volunteering at Care Net, click here.

To make an online donation to Care Net of Puget Sound, click here

 

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