Kindness is a heart condition
A reflection on the homeless lunch service
There is no doubt that serving your community has an impact on others, and from chatting to our fellow students and reading their statements, we can agree it has a major impact on our hearts. Practical acts of love from the students and volunteers at Urban Vineyard’s community lunch, reveals Jesus to the people that gathers here weekly.
“It is a place that has deepened my heart for people, teaching me the value of every person regardless of circumstances. We all need hope, we are all one.” – Tindall
“It not that we have to do it , it’s that we get to do it.” – Moana
So what exactly is this community lunch?
Lani, a volunteer from Urban Vineyard explains that it is a part of a church community outreach program. Urban Vinyard is a fantastic church that we at LIFE collaborate with on a weekly basis. Urban provides the food and our volunteer’s join the crew that help prepare and serve the food…But it’s not just a place for a free meal! Lani enjoys that it’s a place of opportunity, opportunity to connect with the people of her own city in all walks of life. Yes the lunch is aimed at helping those who may be homeless, but people come from lodges, struggling apartments and many more areas in the city. The lunches set a platform for us to express and to encounter the love and hope of Jesus Christ and Lani feels privileged to be a part of that.
Speaking with these volunteers, it is easy to see that they have a heart for what they do. Making a difference in their own community is incredibly rewarding. Volunteers Mandy & Rosie gave us insight on what they find to be the most rewarding part off Urbans lunches for them…
“Urban Vineyard offers people a weekly space to get connected with others. Often people who might be homeless or losing hope are seen here. They then come into an environment where they discover who they are. It’s the practical love of Jesus that volunteers get to share, and invite people into. Whether it be a smile, a conversation or a meal- Jesus is at the centre of it all. We see people empowered within a safe environment to make decisions, realise their passions and make new choices to set them up for a win. The heart behind what volunteers do breathes hope into whatever circumstance a person comes in carrying.”
We have all been so thankful to engage in this project. It has challenged us to change and expand our mind-sets, to think about how Jesus loved and how we need to love today.
Kindness, is a heart condition.
Elly Bray & Sterling Sharplin
Life Leadership College