Jesus set the example for those who follow him as to how they are to live in the world. As we examine the life of Jesus, it becomes clear Jesus calls us to lives of service and self-giving love. Having witnessed the love of Christ, the author of 1 John says, “Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God … God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him” (1 John 4:7-9). When we allow God’s Spirit to flow through us to be conduits of God’s love, not only is it a form of worship, but through our service God blesses others. Below you will find ways we seek to serve Christ by serving the broken, weary, neglected, oppressed, and hopeless in our community.
Arkansas ranks among the top 5 states in America in which children suffer from food insecurity on a daily basis. In a state that is one of the world’s leading producers of food products such as rice, we have committed to ongoing work of seeking to solve this issue. Through the power of the Spirit, we recognized early this issue is multifaceted and is more than simply about feeding hungry children. Rather, hunger stems from a number of other issues. Moreover, it is an issue which we are unable to solve on our own and need many others to help.
In 2012, we set forth some simple steps to begin this process. We chose to partner with the Arkansas Rice Depot, another organization committed to eradicating childhood hunger, and through many of their established ministries we hoped to see our vision of all being fed come to reality.
Lastly, its amazing how a simple idea can be used by God in extraordinary ways. As part of the initiative in 2012, we desired to sponsor a school through the “Food for Kids” program at the Rice Depot. To see this come to fruition, an idea came forward of creating the frame of a school on a wall and allowing members of the congregation to purchase a brick to build the school – A simple idea. Not only was it a success, but now the Rice Depot has taken the idea and duplicated for many organizations. You may also have a simple idea which can have a great impact upon others. We encourage you to step out and try. God may bless it beyond your imagination.
This is an outreach project for victims of natural disaster such as tornadoes, floods, fires etc. Volunteers sort and store donated items and as needed transport items to designated collection points. You can also donate items such as cleaning supplies, toiletries, etc to help keep the closet stocked. Click HERE to access our supply list and take it with you when you go shopping.
Every 4th Sunday of even numbered months, Asbury sends 10-15 volunteers to Quapaw Quarter United Methodist Church to help prepare and serve a hot meal to the homeless of Little Rock. It is an opportunity to help meet the physical as well as social needs of our community at a very basic level.
The prison ministry is an outreach project to residents of the Central Arkansas Community Correction Center, a facility for non-violent, first time offenders. The first and fourth Sundays of each month volunteers from Asbury UMC and Pulaski Heights UMC provide the residents with a Bible lesson. Clothing is purchased for residents upon their release and Christmas presents are provided for the children of the residents. Asbury’s prison band plays for the residents on the 4th Sunday of the month. This ministry provides volunteers with an opportunity to encourage and help residents learn about Jesus Christ, often for the first time, and to help change lives.
United Methodist Women is a community of women whose purpose is to know God and experience freedom as whole persons through Jesus Christ. It is a group that participates in local and global ministries such as Stew Pot, Flood Buckets, Camp Aldersgate, Rice Depot, etc. Recent projects have included collecting school supplies for delivery at the Sager Brown Center in Louisiana, as well as food collection for the 200,000 Reasons project, which is the United Methodists’ initiative to fight childhood hunger in Arkansas. There are three UMW circles that meet at Asbury at various times for missions as well as fun and fellowship.
Throughout the year, we participate in a number of projects. Depending on the time of the year, you will hear about a variety of service projects happening within the church. Here is a sampling of a few:
Be on the look out for other service opportunities which arise as we continue to discern the Spirit’s movement in our community.