These are my latest card creations. I just have this bundle of four ready to give away and then these new ones I’ve made, but haven’t written in yet, and I’ve been wondering if I should continue or stop doing it.
I enjoy making the cards. It’s therapeutic in a way, for me, but the primary goal has been to seek to encourage others in their faith in Christ.
Many people consider their faith as a private matter, not just personal, and I certainly don’t want to be intrusive or send someone something that’s not wanted or liked. You’re probably familiar with the saying that people who want to share their religious or political views with you almost never want you to share yours with them. It becomes very controversial.
Does God want us to be quiet and polite and just hope that others will come to and grow in their faith in Christ, or are we to challenge them and encourage them? I recently read that any conversation or action that could influence or encourage another person’s faith is manipulative.
What do you think about it? If you were to write in a card a message that you hope someone will make Jesus the object of their faith, are you overstepping a boundary?
I love what you're doing with your ministry. I think it's beautiful. It wouldn't occur to me that it would be manipulative. Did someone say this negative thing to you?
"Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing." 1 Thessalonians 5:11
Blessings, Carla (ps ...I'm not on facebook any longer)
I’m sorry to hear you left FB but glad you’re here on AAG. No one has complained yet. I’m thinking preemptively, I guess, afraid it might come up and wondering how I’d handle it if it does. I’m writing personal messages in the cards that I’m making as God puts individuals on my heart. I know that I don’t like people pushing their beliefs onto me, whether it’s a preference or even something that’s an essential teaching if I'm not ready to believe everything they believe. It only serves to alienate people, not edify them. Yet, I don’t want to write just a casual, generic message, either.
You're very thoughtful. I'm so impressed that you are doing this in the first place. I'm inspired to think of something to do creatively because of this.
You are praying about it, and responding as God puts people on your heart. I believe that people will know it comes from a place of love.
Don't forget that satan is a very real enemy who would seek to destroy and discourage you and the good work you're doing. Please don't be discouraged. People need to know that they are seen, and that someone cares.
You are a very thoughtful and compassionate person.
I pray you will be encouraged to continue in it.
I’d love it if others were inspired by this to start making and giving out cards in their own congregations!
In 2013, I’d been out of church for about three years and then we started attending a different congregation that was a little closer to where we had moved. It was warm and friendly but we knew no one who was there. I began to wonder what I could do to ‘serve’ and I talked to the minister about it. He understood my personality, as well as my social anxiety. He could identify with me but for different reasons. You see, he had been deaf since he was a toddler and wore hearing aids, and his deafness had affected his speech somewhat, and it had taken him many years to overcome those challenges and allow God to use him to evangelize. He told me to pray about it and God would show me a specific need in that congregation that could be met through me. So I prayed and then I told the minister that I’d like to encourage others by sending cards with a personal note in them to those in the congregation, but I didn’t know the people or their addresses. He immediately gave me a copy of his own personal church directory.
So that’s what I did. The cards were store bought and the personal note was brief, sometimes just one sentence that said how God has used them to help me, maybe something they’d said or did at church during a service when I was there, a thought or action that had stuck with me. I’d choose two people each week from the church directory and send the cards through the mail to their home addresses.
We moved to WV in 2015, and last June, we joined a new congregation. Of course, I still struggle with social anxiety and am introverted, but I got to thinking that this sounds like a ministry I could do now in my current congregation.
I pray for everyone there and love them all. I can’t do much to serve and help right now as far as being involved in activities during the meetings, and I’m still feeling like a newbie and don’t have much confidence or really know anyone there, but I want to at least encourage fellow strugglers journeying on the Way. Except this time I have been hand making the cards and giving them to the ones God lays on my heart on the days I attend.
A beautiful testimony Amanda. Thank you.
Hi, Gael! Thanks for your kindness!
I’m worrying, I guess, when I should be trusting. Regarding writing in the cards as I make them and choose the recipients, I’m afraid, too, that people will think I’m just trying to flatter them. I don’t want to be labeled as a flatterer. Is this Satan trying to discourage me from doing this? Also, I know that people don’t encourage others much out of fear that it will only feed their pride.