The Styrofoam leftover container.
It presents so many possibilities.
If only you had one of those containers, you could fill it with your leftovers. You could take that single serving to someone who lives alone and they wouldn’t have to cook dinner. Better yet, you could take it and eat with them. Talk to them. Think of all the people you could serve if you just had the right container. I’ll bet there is someone near you that would really appreciate a dinner, a treat, a surprise. More than that, though, they would know that you were thinking of them.
So get a container–any container. It could be a special leftovers container, it could be your old gladwear or rubbermaid containers, or it could be a simple paper plate. It’s not the container that matters. Fill that plate with food. The dinner that you made too much of, the cookies that you want out of the house, or the bread you made this morning.
Now think for a minute who around you could use some love.
There’s someone who just had a baby
Someone had surgery.
Someone who’s mother is dying and they haven’t had time to think about dinner.
There’s someone in your neighborhood who feels isolated and alone,
Someone who lives in the neighbor’s basement apartment and doesn’t think anyone knows they are even there,
Someone who is sick,
Someone who is caring for their aged spouse and can’t leave the house much,
Someone who’s pregnant,
Someone who is worried about their teenager.
How about the neighbor whose missionary just came home?
One of your neighbors is having trouble at work. Maybe their business is going badly, or maybe their small start up company is booming so fast, they don’t have time to think.
Someone just lost their job.
What about that neighbor who doesn’t come to church,
Or the family who just moved in? They have boxes all over, and haven’t even thought of how they are going to feed the family tonight.
Someone’s oven is broken. Again.
Someone’s in the middle of a painting or remodeling project.
Someone is alone, thinking of the spouse that they loved who has died.
Someone is surrounded by three kids under 5, just wishing they were alone.
There’s the neighbor whose car is in the shop, so she couldn’t go out and get groceries this week. She’s looking at the cupboard wondering what she’s going to make with tomato juice, macaroni, and canned peaches.
Someone’s husband is out of town on business, and she is feeling overwhelmed.
Someone is trying to figure out the taxes.
Did you know that your neighbor has had three kids get sick in the past week? I’ll bet she wouldn’t so no if dinner showed up at the door.
Someone is battling depression and doesn’t feel like she can even step outside.
Someone just found out they have cancer.
Someone has given up hope.
Wouldn’t they love to know that you were thinking of them?
If you are saying to yourself, “I’m a terrible cook. No one wants to eat something that I made. I was just going to go pick up a pizza for my family tonight.” Then pick up extra. Drop one off at that neighbor’s house. Ring the bell and say that the delivery is here. Give them a hug, and leave. Or pick up cookies from the grocery store. No judgement on your cooking skills.
It doesn’t have to be wrapped fancy. It doesn’t even have to be food. Do you have a book you loved and you think a friend might enjoy it? Drop it off with a note letting them know you were thinking of them.
Don’t want them to know it’s from you? Do the doorbell ditch. Leave the package on the front step, ring the bell, and run around the corner. It’s exhilarating. It’s fun to not get caught. (Just make sure someone is actually home or the stray dog might find your goodies.)
Afraid to go to the neighbor’s house? Write a note. Mail it.
If you read that list above and think…That’s me! I’m experiencing one or two of those difficult situations! Someone should bring me something!
Don’t think you are exempt from service. You need to do service now, even though it’s hard. Nothing will make you feel better about your situation than serving someone else.
Too many people are alone, or FEEL like they are alone in their situation. All of us feel that way sometimes. Why not share? Share your food, share your leftovers, share your cookies, share your time, share your LOVE.
You can make your world a better place just by filling up that container, and showing someone else how much you care.