Merriam-Webster defines sanctuary as (1) a consecrated place, and (2) a place of refuge and protection. Yes, Front Porch does hold worship services on Saturday evening. In addition, as Joel likes to say, Front Porch is there to provide refuge every day of the week when the wheels come off. How important is it for students to have a refuge as they face the challenges of becoming young adults? How much better if that refuge is home to God?
"Let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them" (Exodus 25:8).
Joel recently stressed to the volunteers how important their mere presence is to Front Porch. Simple acts like a welcoming smile or showing someone how to make expresso can be huge. When we are scared, hurt or desperate a smile, a hug or sharing a cup of coffee may make all the difference. Especially the hug.
Giving Tuesday is the Tuesday following two of the biggest shopping days of the year: Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Since it falls between Thanksgiving and Christmas people are presumably buying presents.
As we sit around the Thanksgiving table and reflect on things for which we are thankful, hopefully the wonderful sanctuary we call Front Porch will enter the conversation. Unlike the volunteers, you may not be able to have a physical presence at Front Porch but you can make your presence felt. A contribution to Front Porch may be the most rewarding present you give this year.