Friday, May 21, 2010

The 'Least of These'


"B
etter to go to the house of mourning than to go to the house of feasting, For that is the end of all men; And the living will take it to heart." Ecc 7:2

This verse came to mind this week as our family had a couple opportunities to share at nursing homes in the Flint, Michigan area. Especially Wednesday morning.

You see, we've sang at nursing homes many times. In fact, that's really how we got started sharing music together. The music and travels we're involved with today was never something we 'planned'. It was simply an overflow of sharing in our local area.

But Wednesday morning was unique. We visited a hospice-care center with around 22 patients. Many of them in their last days here on earth. We walked from room to room, sharing 4-part hymns acapella. It's amazing how a simple gesture, a familiar hymn, and a gentle handshake can make a difference.

On a couple occasions, the family of the patients would listen with tears streaming down their faces. In other rooms, the nurses were shocked to hear their patients singing along with us. The rich words of those timeless hymns truly reach the heart.

If your family is looking for an opportunity to share together, the local nursing home is a wonderful place to start. Grab a hymnal. Learn a couple simple parts -- or sing in unison! Talk to your children about the importance of smiling, shaking the resident's hands and looking them in the eye. And go for it! God will bless as you make time for what our society considers to be 'the least of these.'

Singing "Jesus Loves Me"

[Note: Because of the sensitive nature of our time at the hospice care center, we didn't bring our camera to capture those moments. These pictures are from our visit to a retirement village yesterday.]




"And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'" Matt 25:40

13 comments:

Lily said...

I never really realized how much of a blessing younger people are to the elderly who live in nursing homes. My family and I also go to a retirement center about once a month with some friends to play piano, sing, (on occasion perform a small play), games, random activities, etc... and the people there are so blessed by it! They love it and it's a great way to share God's Word with them as well. Looks you had a great time!

Love from,
Lily

Mikala said...

What great ministry opportunities! And I loved the pics! They were so sweet!

Chrstine said...

So sweet! We sing at nursing homes also every 3rd week of the month... it is so nice to see their smiles of appreciation, and be able to brighten up their day with singing a few hymns; when alot of resedences do not get visitors at all. Keep up the great work!!

Addie said...

It is so much fun to go and sing/play for the nursing homes! We go there with some friends also, and the residents just love the little ones! It is neat to see their faces light up with joy!

Annie said...

How sweet! I enjoy visiting nursing homes, as well. It is especially encouraging to me when I know that others are encouraged by it. :)
(Hannah, your hair is getting so long! Beautiful!)
Blessings,
~Annie~

Jenny said...

Your in Michigan!!! The best state ever! Flint is only an hour away from me!

Jenna said...

I would like to thank you very much for this post. A few years ago when we lived in the city, we visited a nursing home each week to sing hymns with the residents...I didn't like it at all then, but the Lord has opened my eyes - that it WAS and IS an excellent thing to do and now I am going to ask my parents if we can go and visit/sing with them again:)

Love in Christ,
Jenna

Ruth Ann said...

beautiful...this post touches my heart. :)

Marissa and Andrea said...

It's incredible how much these people appreciate your music and smiling faces. :) It is such a blessing to them. My siblings and I sing/play at a nursing home often. Sometimes when we're getting ready for it we get discouraged and frustrated, but once we get there it's always worth it!

~Marissa

Charity U said...

That's wonderful that you go and visit them. I think that is one ministry that God will bless you for specifically. (-:

Anonymous said...

That's really neat! It's great how you all are sharing with these folks even when so many people seem to ignore them. I'm sure you were a blessing to the residents, their families, and the staff!

~ An Indiana Aquaintance :)

kannan said...

Wonderful!

Grace Mally said...

Great post!! :)