From Bunkbeds to Meals
For a number of years, the Love Your Neighbor Bunkbed Team has served families in our community by building bunk beds for foster families, kinship families, and at-risk families who are providing safe places for kids to sleep. This is a ministry that has grown and had so much impact all over Colorado Springs and even in other countries with some of our ministry partners! The beauty of the LYN Bunkbed Ministry is that it offers a unique opportunity for serving to those who may not have found their niche before.
Pulpit Rock is launching a new Love Your Neighbor Team with the same goal in mind – to fill an unmet need in the kingdom and offering a new serving opportunity for those who might still be looking for their niche.
Introducing the Love Your Neighbor Meal Team! There is nothing more practical than a meal when a family is walking through a challenging season such as a death in the family, an illness, a surgery, or welcoming a new baby. Our desire is to be a blessing and, quite literally, the hands and feet of Jesus as we meet families in their home with a delicious meal to share. This is an opportunity for the church to demonstrate generosity to individual families who may be unable to “give back” in this season. Jesus was very conscious of people’s physical needs and as his people, we want to meet our community’s physical needs alongside their spiritual needs.
This is a way to wrap around a family in love and support during a time that frequently feels lonely and stressful. We want to walk with families through suffering, challenge, grief, and pain in a way that is extremely tangible. We want these meals to help families will feel like they are not alone in their suffering and hopefully open the door for the Holy Spirit to draw them closer to the Father. This is the gospel. If a family knows that God cares for their bellies, it is so much easier to see how he cares for their lives and their hearts. So come use your gift of cooking to join us!
The Love Your Neighbor Meal Team Origin
My name is Haley Tuggle, and serving families with food has been a passion of mine for many years. I’m so excited to be a part of this ministry and walk alongside families by bringing meals to their homes.
When I was in high school, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. As the oldest of five and home schooled in a rural area, many household and school responsibilities fell on my shoulders. Some home school friends of ours organized a meal train for my family, and for three months, three times per week, meals appeared at our door. We knew no one on that meal train team except the original family who started it. They were Mormon, and bringing food is a very important part of the Mormon culture. The Lord provided so generously through those people – and as the one bearing most of the household burden I will never, ever forget the love I felt through every meal that appeared at our door. It was evidence of God with us even in a very, very dark time for my family.
As I got older and reflected on that time, I began to consider: where was our church during that time? Where were the hands and feet of Jesus from the church we had been a part of for 10+ years? None of them brought meals or came to pray with us or to help with our many needs. The Lord showed me that while he can provide in many ways through many people, he desires most to provide through his church. He wants his people to care for one another’s needs.
I began to look for ways to serve in the same way. I resolved never to pass a meal train by if I had the ability to take a meal, whether I knew the family or not. For years most of my adult life, as I am able, I have taken 1-2 meals a month to families I know and families I don’t who need the encouragement of a meal made in love. The more I searched for opportunities, the more I found, but I have come to realize that I just can’t meet all the needs that I see around me in our church and in my own personal community. I was sure that there were many more people in the PRC community with the same desire, passion, and skills. I approached the PRC staff to ask how we could find these people, and so the LYN Meal Team was born.
How The LYN Meal Team Works
- Who the LYN Meal Team serves
- Those who have lost a loved one, had a new baby, gotten a new foster placement, going through health trials, just had a surgery, etc.
- For now, we want to meet the needs of the people inside of Pulpit Rock Church. Once we have grown in size, we hope to open that to our surrounding community!
- Where the Meal Team Requests come from
- The staff at PRC who see a need
- Pulpit Rock church members who know someone with a need
- The person who needs the meals
- The Love Your Neighbor Meal Request Website Page (still under construction)
- You! If you see a need or have a need, please email me so that I can start the process of getting a meal train set up!
- What happens when a meal team request comes in
- Myself or another team member contacts the family who needs the meals and gathers basic information such as address, number of people in the family, allergies, etc.
- Myself or another team member creates a meal train using www.mealtrain.com and then emails the link out to the meal team
- You pick your preferred dates to bring meals and sign up at the link
- What happens after you sign up for a meal
- When your meal day arrives, you will text the family contact person and let them know your name and what you plan to bring
- You make the meal and drive it to their house!
- What happens when the meal train ends
- Myself or another lead team member will take the final meal in the meal train and check on the family. We will ask if they need any more meals or if their need has been met. We will ask for feedback on how the meal train impacted that family and offer to pray over their family.
- Hopefully we will have the opportunity to share the impact of the meals with all of you via email!
- How long do meal trains last
- Our hope is that meal trains will last as long as the need exists. It is very important to me that we walk alongside families for the duration of their hard season – I want these families to feel seen in the midst of the heaviness. It is my hope that this team will have the opportunity to listen to, serve, and pray over families who aren’t able to connect with the main PRC community very much in this season. This is an amazing opportunity to make those on the fringe of our community feel welcomed, seen, loved, and cared for. This is exactly what Jesus did constantly!
- I am also very conscientious of making the meal team sustainable. I will not be committing to meal trains that we do not have the capacity for as a team. I don’t want to burn any of you out! With that in mind we will also work to make our commitments a reasonable length of time based on the needs of the family and other needs that have come up.
Does this sound like the opportunity you have been waiting for?
- We are asking those who would like to join the LYN Meal Team to determine whether they can commit to signing up for meals consistently and the number of meals they can prepare and deliver each month – for example, two meals per month is fairly sustainable – and then sign up at this link. This will place you on the Active Meal Team Member list and you will start receiving emails with meal train links and updates.
- There will absolutely be seasons where this may not be possible. If that is you right now or at some point in the future, you can still sign up for the meal team! If you know you will not be able to participate for multiple months, please just let me know so that I can update our meal capacity as a team.
- The reason this is important is because I don’t want to commit to more meals than we are able to bring. Knowing if we have 10 active Meal Team Members versus 20 or 30 is the difference of 1, 2, or 3 meal trains that we can do at one time. So please consider your ability to commit (both now and ongoing) and keep me updated!
- Sign up to serve on the LYN Meal Team at https://loveyourneighborcs.com/meals/
- If you have any questions or just want to hear more before making a commitment, please email firstname.lastname@example.org