COVID Community Outreach Walk
By Dennis R. Carlson
In March 2020 everything changed in my world. Many people thought that these changes were difficult and certainly not for the better. As my wife and I started to adjust our lives to the reality of working from home, we had to rethink our daily schedule.
Some things we knew would have to change; others would stay the same. The most obvious changes had to happen during the hours that we would have normally left to go to work and return home at the end of the workday. As I write, the two weeks of working from home has turned into almost a year and there is no end in sight.
The first observation we made was that we now had over an hour each day of extra time that would have normally used to commute to and from the office. We decided to use that time for outdoor exercise. We live in a gated community of individuals who are over age fifty-five. We have beautiful trails to walk on especially in spring when all the plants and trees are blooming. There is also a golf course that allows walking on the cart paths before 8 a.m. each day. We spent most of our walking time on the golf course.
We found that there were many other residents who also walked every morning and we determined to make it a point to greet every person we met on our walks. This became a daily routine to the 30 or 40 people that we met each day.
Over time we were able to learn names and get acquainted with these daily walkers. We learned of their concerns and family challenges and began to add their concerns to our prayers each day.
Now that the light portion of the days have become shorter and the weather cold, we do not see our friends as often, but for six months during 2020 we were able to interact with our community every day. What was looked at by most as a horrible burden turned out to be a tremendous blessing for my wife and I, both in our physical exercise each day, and getting to know some of the people in our community.
We’ve learned that God can always make something sweet out of the sour events in our lives. We miss the daily interaction with our community and the information that these encounters would give to our prayers during these winter months. While we may not know until heaven how God answered our prayer walks, we will keep praying. And God still gives us occasional encounters with our walking friends that provide more things to be included in our prayers.
Dennis R. Carlson is the director of the Planned Giving & Trust Services ministry at the General Conference.
World Church Prayer Requests
March 5 - 11, 2021
• Pray for the growing ministry of Adventist World Radio. Pray that many more will be able to hear the message of God’s love over the radio waves, and be brought to Him.
• Pray for the cell phone evangelism that is taking off through Adventist World Radio. Thousands of doors are opening to share the truth as we’ve never experienced before. To get involved, click here: https://awr.org
• Pray for the 54 Hope Channels around the world, broadcasting in 60 languages God’s good news of a better life for today and for eternity.
• Pray for the other Adventist media networks around the world that are also seeking to share the Three Angel’s Messages far and wide.
• Pray for the upcoming World Youth Day, which occurs March 20, 2021. Pray that many young people will take part and lives will be changed for eternity.