5. A gift in the mail.
Along with my note, I’ll include a coupon for a free pizza. Few guests will expect this. As they open the letter, I’m hoping they’ll hear the Holy Spirit whisper, “Church isn’t what you thought it was. These people love you.”
6. Prayer cards.
Our best gift to our neighbors is prayer. Starting this weekend, I’ll ask our people to fill out prayer cards with the names of seven friends they’ll pray for and invite to Easter.
I’ll ask all New Songers to fill out two cards, one to keep, and one to turn in, so I can pray with them for their friends. Nothing tills the soil of a human heart like prayer.
7. Prayer room.
During the weeks leading up to Easter, we turn our prayer room into a war room. Every card that’s turned in will be posted in the prayer room. We’ll feature twelve stations and ask people to fill up all twenty-four hours, praying for our community, praying for people’s friends by name, praying for our ministry teams, and other personal and corporate needs. Our prayer room serves double duty for us. It lifts our community to the Lord, and it teaches newer believers that it really is possible to pray for an hour at a time and not get bored.
8. Random acts of kindness.
Once we’ve begun praying, we want to pile on the love by serving our community in practical ways. Two weeks after we issue prayer cards, we put “RAK” (Random Act of Kindness) cards in our programs with a list of 150 suggestions of ways you can show tangible love to your neighbors.
One of our suggestions is “Pay for the coffee of the person in line behind you.” One year a New Songer did this, handing an RAK card to a Starbucks attendant. He asked her to give the card to the driver of the car behind him. As he was pulling away, a friend called and asked him to get her a coffee, so he pulled back into line. When he got to the attendant, he was handed his same RAK card. – It had traveled through seven cars, each one paying for the person behind them. Jesus was right: give and it will come back to you!