17 Ways to Reach Out to Single Parents

17 Ways to Reach Out to Single Parents- from Pinterest (Tricia)

A little over forty years ago, a single, young woman was about to give birth. She didn’t know how to afford a child without her parents’ help. She hadn’t talked to her former boyfriend in months. She couldn’t reach him, didn’t know how to tell him she was having his child.

This young woman attended church some, yet her dialogue with God was stilted. How could God let this happen to her? What would her life be like now?

A baby girl was born, and upon holding her child this young lady knew things would be OK. Perhaps this baby was a gift, not a burden as she supposed.

This woman raised her daughter the best she could, and while she wanted to give her child more than she had . . . history has a way of repeating itself. When the daughter became a young woman, she found herself in the same situation — living at home, pregnant and scared.

The daughter knew she could raise this child. After all, her mom had done it. But what would her life be like? How could God let this happen to her?

If you haven’t guessed already, I was the daughter born to a single mom and as a teenager became a single mom myself. At age 17, God gave me a son. My boyfriend was out of the picture, and I faced raising a child alone with little education, no money and, maybe according to the world, little hope for my future. I know what it’s like to be a young, simple mom and what made a huge difference in my life. Here are some ways you can reach out to single parent:

1. Free childcare.

A Moms’ Day out is greatly needed! You should know that these moms, especially teen moms, may have a hard time leaving their children. Outline for them as clear as possible who will be watching their kids, what type of childcare experience they have, and what activities will be done. Many young moms have been hurt in the past in numerous ways and they are very sensitive when it comes to their kids.

2. Guy Events.

Many children of single parents don’t have positive male role models in their lives. Activities for guys to do with kids–fishing, an obstacle course, Lego building, etc. would be a huge blessing for these moms. They understand this need in their kids and feel bad because of it.

3. Car clinics.

Many single moms don’t have someone to help with maintenance stuff like checking the oil, checking the tires, checking the windshield wipers, etc. And cleaning out/detailing the car would be a huge blessing, too.

4. Expert advice.

Do you have experts who could help them with advice?

  • Legal (custody stuff)
  • Resume building or job training
  • Parenting tips or help
  • Cooking simple meals
  • Reading the Bible

Pass out a questionnaire ahead of time and find out their needs.

5. Necessity kits.

Many moms struggle with money. Kits you can put together.

  • First aid kits
  • Cleaning kids
  • Spice cabinet basics
  • Toiletry kits
  • Home “office” kit: calendar, stamps, pens, tape, stapler, etc.
  • Kitchen towels and potholders

6. Christian books and resources.

Again these are “splurge” items they’re not able to buy for themselves.

7. Craft time!

Single moms often don’t have time to sit down and have fun. Create a craft event where they can sit, make something cool, and chat with others.

8. Gift cards

Give them a gift card for dinner out at someplace other than McDonalds.

9. Gas cards.

They often get stuck at home because they don’t have enough money for gas.

10. Christian music.

They often don’t know it exists, but find it uplifting.

11. Toys-R-Us or Walmart gift cards.

So they can buy something nice for their child’s birthday or a holiday.

12. Home improvement projects.

Mowing the yard of a single mom, or putting together a set of bunk beds is a huge help.

13. Offer a mini-vacation.

This takes more work, but moms often don’t get a change to get away. Does someone you know work at a hotel chain where you can get a discount on a hotel room? Or does someone have a vacation home or time share nearby?

14. Invite her to your house for dinner.

She’ll be happy and shocked!

15. Free haircut, manicure or massage.

… from a professional! Being pampered is something they usually don’t have the time or money for.

16. Kids haircuts.

This is a huge help to her, too!

17. Birthday cakes.

Do you have someone who can bake a birthday cake for her birthday or her child’s?

Download the FREE printable of how you can reach out to single parents today!

God FORGIVES the Single too!

Forgiveness is a much misunderstood concept as well as one that is not practiced regularly. Forgiveness is not… ignoring the peerson or the grievances by not thinking about them. Forgiveness is not forgetting, which isn’t reasonable. Forgiveness is not letting that person off the hook for their wrongs committed against you and you can’t expect wrongs to be made right before you forgive a person. Forgiveness is the decision to accept the reality of the situation and absorb the pain of the wrong acts committed. Then a person can let go of the past in order to live freely in the present and the future.

You may have strong objections to forgiving someone of the crimes committed against you. You will feel that justice was not done and the perpetrator should be punished. You might be right but you are not responsible for metting out punishment. What about “don’t get mad, get even”? Revenge! Problem with revenge is that it lowers you to the standard of the offender. It confirms opinions of others who may feel that you deserved your fate. And it usually is the start of reprisals and retaliations.

What if you hate them? Hatred will turn a likable person into a sour cynic. It will lead to power struggles with people who should not be enemies. It can lead to physical ailments such as hypertension, ulcers, indigestion, heart disease and emotional instability.  You could transfer your feelings to new relationships and alienate potential friends and relationships.

How to forgive. Write down all your grievances. Write a letter asking the person to acknowledge wrong doing. See what the response is. You will either lead them to a change of heart or they will blow you off. Regardless of the response, pray for their health, success and relationship with God. Then move on with your future and your faith walk.

Remember that Jesus Christ died on that cross for the forgiveness of your sins. Let them go!

 

 

God Loves the Single Person (equally)…..

     It is interesting how churches attract different people.

     For example,  the Saddleback Church in California actively ***markets*** to middle class Caucasian families (Dad, Mom and the kids) ages 25-45. There are no apologies. Here are the lessons. Here is the focus. Here is who is expected to attend. Is that wrong?

     The Toms River Christian church has grown AFTER realizing that the local families and younger people were not attracted to the conservative message preached. They instituted an outreach to senior citizens and have grown with with it.

     Some (musical) churches have “rock and roll” praise or hip hop church.

     Even accapella churches are either “old school” or “new school” when it comes to what songs are sung.

     So….here is some info to stuff in your hat and keep your brain warm. Use it as you like.

  • 37% of Americans claim to attend church regularly (weekly). Probably about half of that number actually do. More elderly attend church than do younger adults. More women attend church than do men but the attendance of men especially fathers has a greater influence. So, Dads, go to church! (see below- borrowed from Barna)

If a father does not go to church, no matter how faithful his wife’s devotions, only one child in 50 will become a regular worshiper. If a father does go regularly, regardless of the practice of the mother, between two-thirds and three-quarters of their children will become churchgoers (regular and irregular). If a father goes but irregularly to church, regardless of his wife’s devotion, between half and two-thirds of their offspring will attend church regularly or occasionally.

A non-practicing mother with a regular father will see a minimum of two-thirds of her children ending up at church. In contrast, a non-practicing father with a regular mother will see two-thirds of his children not attending church. If his wife is similarly irregular that figure rises to 80 percent.

An American study found similar results on the impact of fathers:

  • When both parents attend Sunday school, 72% of the children attend Sunday school when grown.
  • When only the father attends Sunday school, 55% of the children attend when grown.
  • When only the mother attends Sunday school, 15% of the children attend when grown.
  • When neither parent attends Sunday school, only 6% of the children attend when grown.

 

  • Church attendees are happier, more content, healthier and tend to be 5 pounds *heavier* than non attendees. Maybe it is the pot lucks…..
  • 48% of the church attendees are MARRIED.
  • 29% are divorced and 31% are never married.
  • In churches of Christ, about 15% of attendees are not married: widows, divorced and never married….

So, one would think that God favored the married. It isn’t true. Joseph, Moses, David, Jesus and Paul all had their greatest successes as single men as did Esther as a single woman.

Paul warned in 1 Corinthians 7:32   that the single will not be distracted from the Lord…..the married person is responsible for family.

God loves the Christian equally, whether married or single. I hope your church does also.

 

God Loves the Single (person) Who Loves Himself….

   I have observed that many believers, both single and married exude an aura of misery. So many believers seem so unhappy. Gloom, despair and agony in high amounts. Why? We have the gift of eternal life, the good news, new beginnings, forgiveness of sins…..we are princes and princesses, the adopted children of the King of kings!

The Greatest Commandment

34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[c] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[d] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

     I see several teaching points in these verses. Don’t dismiss the two worlds “as yourself”. Do you “love yourself”?

     Maybe we need a little practice. Can I suggeste the following advice:

Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain. Phillippians 2:14-16

     How attractive is the person who wears joy like a jewel, who finds good in all! Who can resist a person who loves God, themselves and others openly and with all their heart!

 

    

    

God Loves the Single Too!

excerpts from “God Loves the Single, Too” written by Gary Beauchamp (approx. 1974).

Many Singles feel like outsiders in the church. Yet Jesus was single as was Paul. Three major themes can be very helpful to the single.

First, you are a person of great value! God appreciates  and loves you as you use your talents as a 20 year old nursing student who pays her bills waitressing at the pizza joint or as a welder at the ship yard. Singles in the church are medical doctors, psychologists, salesmen, managers, ministers, plumbers, techies, truck drivers, rocket scientists, lawyers and dental hygienists. You might be a college kid or a senior citizen. You are the single parents, the never married, the widowed, the divorced. Many of you are surprised to still be single, shocked to be single again or devastated after losing a spouse after a fifty year marriage. God sees and knows your situation. He purchased your life at great expense with the sacrifice of his son, Jesus.

Secondly, there are answers to all the traumas and challenges of the single Christian from the all time best seller, the Bible. Your problems in life are unique but God has seen it all.

Lastly, satisfaction and security comes with a relationship with God the Father, Jesus the son and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Take god at his word. Trust him, follow him and commit to him.

If you desire to live as a Christian single and overcome the major problems in a world turned upside down by changes in morals, values and expectations then you must know that answers are available. The single can expect a richer life, be a better person, find true joy and happiness and have a lasting relationship with their Saviour, Jesus Christ.

So, buckle up. Expect new thoughts about every two weeks. Comments welcome! Guest authors coveted! Upcoming events (managed by awesome Carol B.) are opportunities to fellowship and worship. Enjoy!

 

New Beginnings……………

     Happy New Year! 2015 is here (doesn’t sound right , does it? ) So, what are we going to do with it? And, don’t tell me nothing changes but the date! Below is a list of things that do or do not change with or without you  —-then a list of things you can change —–

  • Insurance deductables start over…..but, you also have new money to spend at the dentist…..
  • New Year’s Day brings alot of  excitement about sports, and quick disappointment for most!
  • The sun comes up…..the first Sunrise of the year is almost always pretty!
  • Church starts at the same time.
  • Work expects you to show up.
  • Politicians still lie.
  • Grass is green…………

So, what can I change?

  • Make peace with God. How, you ask? Pray! Feed someone who is hungry. Visit the sick. Be baptized.
  • Tell your family you love them….every day….act like you mean it!
  • Raise your children!
  • Understand that TV, sports, Nascar, Wraslin’, Hunting and Fishing are “hobbies” and “distractions” and we can spend less time being distracted.
  • Understand that though we have responsibility to work, we also have a responsibility to make the lives of others better through it.
  • Commit to other SINGLES including outings that encourage (see upcoming events!)
  • Be thankful!

Peace and love!

About Tattoos…………Opinions and Honest Discussion

tattoom

A friend of mine posted a provocative article about “why girls have tattoos and piercings” that insinuated that people with body ornamentation are “broken”. Read and tell me what you think……

1. What kind of girl would be comfortable lying down half-naked in public for two hours while some fat dude with a dirty beard jams a sharp needle into her skin? Answer: the kind of girl who takes sharp objects in her body as a hobby. Girls with tattoos and/or piercings (aside from earrings) are people who fall in and out of guys’ beds at a moment’s notice. If you’re unfortunate enough to commit to a girl with ink on her body or metal in her face, she’ll cheat on you at the drop of a hat. Tattoos and piercings are the mark of the promiscuous.

2. They have no foresight

  • Even in our degenerate society, people with visible tattoos and piercings have difficulty getting jobs. Not even minimum wage employers will hire them, because no one wants their Big Mac or Double Crappuccino served by an Apocalypto extra. Girls who get inked or pierced are showing that they can’t be trusted to plan for the future. They don’t care that their stupid choices will consign them to living off their parents for the rest of their lives: all they care about is their individuality.Not only that, but girls with tattoos specifically have no idea that their cool designs will be destroyed by aging. Gravity and Father Time work their magic on us all, and your taut flesh will eventually sag and wrinkle like a raisin in the sun. A chick who can’t comprehend that the awesome Narnia scene tattooed on her back will look like Technicolor vomit when she’s 40 is not a good choice to be the mother of your children.

    pierced-tongue-woman

    3. They’re selfish

    The reasons girls get tattoos and piercings—“I’m doing it for ME!”—are indicative of narcissism and mild psychopathy. Girls get tattoos for the same reasons they cut their hair short: a desperate attempt to assert how unique and special they are. A girl who willfully disfigures herself like this will never attempt to please you or do anything nice for you. She won’t care for you when you’re sick, will refuse to sleep with you for completely arbitrary reasons, and will generally be  moody and unlikable .

    lena-dunham

    4. They’re boring

    Girls’ logic when it comes to tattoos is best described by paraphrasing Lena Dunham’s character in Girls: ”I have a tattoo, and that just makes me naturally interesting.” Nothing could be further from the truth. My experience shows me that girls with ink and/or metal are the most boring, conformist chicks you’ll ever come across. To be fair, most girls are dull as dirt, but tattooed and pierced girls are aggressively dull, assaulting you with the most hackneyed left-wing tripe you’ll ever hear.

    My “piercing addict” girlfriend, for example, identified as a Marxist  based on one class she took on Latin America and was constantly talking my ear off about some “injustice” or another. The joke was that before she took that class, she was so tuned out to current events that she wasn’t even registered to vote.

    hipster-tattoo

    5. They’re mentally ill

    This is the clincher. Any girl who thinks that a getting a ring in her nose or a Bible verse on her back is a good idea is going to be off her rocker. In my entire life, I have never met an inked or pierced girl who wasn’t sick in the head, whether they had depression, “anxiety” or a full-blown personality disorder. While girls with facial piercings and tattoos on the arms or legs can at least feign normality, chicks with piercings or tattoos on or near their erogenous zones are the kinds of broads who will cut you with a knife.

    But if you’re looking for a girl you can wife up, go for the ones who haven’t mangled their bodies beyond repair.”

*****the following is an article written by Matt Forney. I edited a lot of the harsher parts out.*****

AS a believer, I would caution others to not judge this book by the cover. Consider age, circumstance, culture, life experiences and socialization before making a hasty judgement. Times are changing as are reasons for choices in body art.

  • in the old days (my grandparents day) Sailors and dancing girls had tattoos ….
  • My dad had a blurred tattoo on his wrist and another on his arm, both drawn by another soldier during WW2. BTW, his generation saved the world
  • older Rock Stars had tattoos (think Johnny Winter)
  • TODAY, I know ministers, doctors, lawyers, nurses and teachers who have tattoos. Most are younger than 35. Many use ink to celebrate triumph, mourn loss and remember special occurences. Most are not promiscuous, mentally ill, boring or selfish. At my church, one of the song leaders and several young adults have tattoos…..
  • BTW, are we not ALL BROKEN?

What do you think?