As a volunteer or leader with Kin Ministry, you attended the volunteer training provided through our education partner, BeFriender Ministry. As a refresher from your training, we will begin to review what we learned. Last time we reviewed the 4 Guiding Principles. Today we will be reminded of our tree rings.
Did You Know – Tree Rings
You, as a Kin Ministry volunteer, are called to support and nurture those you connect with on behalf of your faith community. Through your understanding and listening presence, you are a living reminder of God’s love. When we serve as that reminder, let us be mindful of the people, life events and experiences that shape our lives and how we listen.
Refer to the reflection questions you received prior to volunteer training.
1. Significant people in my life – people who have influenced me:
2. Significant Life Events (include challenges and joys)
3. What experiences have you had with isolated individuals?
• How might your past experiences with isolated individuals impact your future relationships with isolated individuals?
These people, life events and experiences stay with us and create the tree rings of our lives. Do you remember what our training taught us about tree rings? Let’s take a look.
Used with Permission. © BeFriender Ministry-A Listening Presence. Bloomington, MN www.befrienderministry.org
Rings – When we look at the whole, the tree ring and our life, we can see the patterns and directions beginning to emerge and come clear. Everyone has a unique pattern, as the experiences in their lives are unique to them.
Knots – The knots show a time of growth through difficulty. We, too, have knots in our lives.
Bark – The bark serves to protect the tree. Without the bark, the tree would die. Yet, the bark is porous enough to allow the tree to grow. The bark is like our defenses. They cannot and should not be stripped away, yet, they must be open to allow for growth.
God is There
God walked with you when you created your tree rings, he held you up as you healed your knots, and he sees through your defensive bark. God calls you to serve based on what he knows of your heart, mind and soul. God promises to be present and to support each person in their ministry just as he does with you.