Festive Focus: Combat National Hunger

Being a Christian is not a passive activity, it’s an active state of mind that is necessarily backed up by action, whether that’s attending a weekly service or organising a regular meetup to discuss your faith.

We all live busy, hectic lives, some of us may have families, and the responsibilities that goes along with that can often threaten to completely eclipse every other thought that we have. The daily struggle to get food on the table is one that millions of Americans face, at this time of year it can be beneficial for those lucky few of us who do not have these concerns to consider how we can help out our fellow countrymen.

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, offering us the perfect opportunity to take an honest look at how we are exercising our faith and spreading God’s love during this most holy time of the year. As Christmas draws ever closer, you might consider taking part in one of these activities to combat national hunger:¬†

Volunteer at your local soup kitchen

Soup kitchens exist in cities all across the country, they offer volunteers the opportunity to make a real difference to someone’s day by helping homeless and destitute people get a hot meal. Soup kitchens are always looking for volunteers to help them out, there are dozens of tasks needed to make such a scheme function. One day you may find that you’re sourcing the ingredients needed to cook the food, other times you may be cooking the food or serving it.

Take part in a Christmas shoebox appeal

Christmas shoebox appeals have been a popular form of charity for the last few decades, they offer volunteers the chance to make a child’s Christmas really special, something that we can certainly all appreciate. The premise is simple enough: you take an empty shoebox and then fill it with small gifts for your mystery recipient. You can either choose to send your box off to a delivery centre, or you can go the extra mile and volunteer with the charity and help with the logistics of delivering all these special festive gifts.

Host a festive night of dinner and discussion

Sometimes it can be the simple things that make the difference to your Christmas. If you’re lucky enough to have food to share, then why not share it? By inviting your fellow church members or neighbours around for an evening of food and discussion, you can share your wealth in addition to encouraging meaningful discussion about the issues that are affecting your community and the rest of the country.

Proverbs 22:9//The generous will themselves be blessed, for they share their food with the poor.

Student Focused Events & Meet Ups

If you’ve recently started college in Houston and are looking for opportunities to fellow students that share your faith, then why not head to one of these fantastic student focused events?

Starting your new college life can be a trying time, you may find that you’re a long way from home and without the help of your usual support network – thankfully, there are plenty of churches and Christian faith groups that organise open, affordable events that often involve some free food – which is always a great way to market to college students! Many Christian student events are advertised throughout campuses, but you’ll also find a good deal of them online too.

If you’re feeling a little isolated, or lonely, then check out one of these events and make some new friends along the way:

L.I.F.E. Devotional

If you haven’t found a church that you feel comfortable praising in then it can be a good idea to simply drop in to a few casual meetings first. The University of Houston is home to thousands of Christian students, many of whom will drop into their regular devotional during their time studying on campus. You don’t need to be a member of the university to jump in, but it will obviously help if you’re a student.

Date: 7:30pm, every Friday Location: Student Center South Astrodome Room, University of Houston

Unique Student Conference

Gospel praise is at the heart of this exciting conference which recognises the unique aspects of every student who attends it. The mission of Unique Student is to guide young people into a life of praise whilst championing their individual gifts, talents and abilities. Their next major conference will not be until July in 2019, but the organisation regularly puts together meetups in order to welcome new students to the city.

Date: Monday 22nd-Friday 26th July 2019 Location: Houston

‘Know Your Worth’ 2018 Girls Conference

Sponsored by Young Mothers Don’t Quit, this inspirational event is just the thing to light the fire in your heart. YMDQ are a non-profit organisation focusing on lifting girls’ spirits and helping them build the confidence and motivation necessary earn their high school diplomas and achieve in college. If you’re too old to make the most of this lecture (it’s aimed squarely at teens between 13 and 18) then you might be able to help out the organisation with one of their fundraising events.

Date: Saturday 10th November 2018 Location: Emancipation Community Centre, 3018 Emancipation Avenue

5 Exciting Faith & Non-Faith Based Events in December

Are you new to Houston and looking to meet some like-minded Christians?

December is one of the busiest times of the year for Christians here in Houston, but it can also be one of the loneliest times for those who have yet properly put their roots down.

At some point in our lives we are all thrust into a new place; either we move home or start a new job, and it can be difficult ‘break the ice’ and get over the initial embarrassment of meeting new people for the first time. Thankfully, if you’re a Christian in Houston you are well and truly amongst friends!

Houston is know for being one of the biggest centres of Christianity in America and although church attendance figures have been slowly dropping in line with the national average, there are still hundreds of thousands of church-going Christian folk who are always eager to meet new friends and make strangers feel welcome. Although December is a month that is naturally packed with Christmas events, there are other events available that are perfect opportunities for newcomers to find out more about the city and themselves.

These are the Christian events that have got us excited us this month:

A Christian Seminar on Romance, Love and Forgiveness [FREE]

There are many reasons why a relationship can break down and sometimes it can be a real challenge to understand why this has happened. Although the Bible is always a great resource when it comes to finding useful lessons, it can prove to be a little oblique when giving us hard lessons. This absolutely free seminar is suitable for people from all backgrounds, regardless of their denomination or current marital status and covers topics such as: ‘Restored Communication’, ‘Forgiveness of the Past’ and ‘Improved Intimacy’.

Date: 5-8pm, Thursday 6th December 2018 Location: Jesse H. Jones Central Library Conference Room, 500 McKinney Street

Blessed To Be A Blessing Spoken Arts Battle [$12.37]

It doesn’t get much more exciting than this! Some of the city’s brightest Christian spoken artists are going to be attendance at what promises to be one of the most electrifying faith-based events this year. Organised by the Bodie Foundation, this evening will not only be a whole load of fun, but it will also be raising money for a good cause. 100% of the proceeds from the event will be going towards a family in need, something that every good-hearted Christian can get behind.

Date: 5:30-9:30pm, Saturday 8th December 2018 Location: Midtown Art Center, 3414 La Branch Street

Eat Together: A Meal for the Longest Night of the Year [FREE*]

This innovative event is just the thing for an open-minded Christian looking to meet and discuss their faith in a relaxed setting. The depths of winter can be a rather dark and unsettling place, so its good in these times to have somewhere to share some food and conversation. Gastrochurch meetings are informal meetups where people from all walks of life can discuss a wide range of topics from a Christian worldview (although all are welcome).

Date: 7-9pm, Friday 21st December 2018 Location: Black Labrador, 4100 Montrose Boulevard