Who do I cook for?

MAY 6, 2013  /  JANELLE PARIS  / 

Who do I cook for?
We are thrilled that Janelle Nehrenz, author of Comfy in the Kitchen, is a monthly contributor to our blog. Janelle loves taking meals and encouraging others to take meals as well.
      -Adina Bailey, Co-founder of TakeThemAMeal.com

The other day I received an e-mail asking me: 'Janelle, who do you cook for?'

It's funny....but I just sat there thinking 'Who DO I cook for?' I mean, I don't have a specific plan....organization....or often times a real purpose.

Who do I cook for?

Then, I started to day dream about the meals I've made, the places I've taken them, the people in need and the situations they were all in... So....here's a peak into my world and who I've cooked for:

  • My family. Of course, this is my first ministry. My immediate family and my extended family get my love first . We've made a lot of great memories around that dinning room table.
  • Friends. Coming together in fellowship is so important....it's nice to have an open home and a meal for friends.
  • Our Adult Bible Fellowship. Bringing in breakfast treats on Sunday mornings.
  • Bible Studies. There is comfort in the fellowship and gathering around the table with snacks. It's a blessing.
  • The man with Multiple Sclerosis. He was a married businessman at one time, but lost it all....his wife, job, and most saddening.... his ability to walk or feel anything from the waist down. He ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches every day, 3 meals a day. The bread could be frozen and the peanut butter and jelly stayed for a while....going grocery shopping was not easy and couldn't be done on his own. Cooking was also difficult. My heart broke for him and so I made and took him dinner for a year.
  • The man with Muscular Dystrophy. He wears a constant smile even though his body is breaking down. His mom lives with him and he cares for her.....she had a heart attack, but was able to come home. Surely they deserved some wedding soup.
  • The widower. He lost the love of his life after 50 years of marriage. She always cooked amazing meals and he really missed that. Something comforting about a home cooked meal. I couldn't replace her cooking, but I could spare a warm plate of food to remind him of God's love.
  • Many new moms. What a miraculous time in life! But, it is also stressful....sleepless nights, nursing, uncomfortably juggling new responsibilities. Not having to worry about dinner time is just so helpful.
  • The countless people who've had surgeries or are struggling with a chronic illness. I can't imagine how hard it is to add hospital visits, the weight of health issues, and extra needed time to a normal busy schedule. Dinner delivered is a blessing.
  • The family who's father/husband was in a car accident. They were trying to make life as normal as they could while he healed.....Mom was tired. This was a huge help.
  • The New Members/Guests at church. It is a HUGE blessing to cook for the new families and get to know them over lunch.
  • Special events {Beautified Banquet} When there's an opportunity to serve, I am on it.
  • Neighbors. I've been known to randomly knock on a door or two with dessert in hand.... they are kind enough to put up with my outdoor cat in their bushes, lol-they deserve a treat every now and again!!! Have I told you ladies how blessed we are with our neighbors? Seriously....we are surrounded by awesome families. It's been an amazing 8 years here.
  • Clients. My husband and I appreciate the business our clients give us. They are a tremendous blessing and what bring in money for our livelihood and my ministry.
  • Children. The kids on the baseball team, school, football, at school, and in the neighborhood. I want to be 'that mom'.

Who do I cook for?

{If I am making a meal for a family, I try to add an additional kid friendly meal....
This meal is sure to bring a smile!}

I feel as though I could go on and on remembering who I cook for, when, for what reason, etc. It's a small ministry in comparison to others, but it's what I feel called to do....what a blessing.

I pray that you too will be branches, reaching out to those around you. A homemade meal is a huge comfort to those who are in a weary place in life.

So many of you have e-mailed me with amazing stories on how you've started your own meal ministries-peronally and for your churches and organizations! It's been so encouraging and has strengthens MY faith when I read these endearing letters. Thank you for taking torch!

For those of you reading today, I'd love to hear who YOU cook for!

A HUGE Thank you to Take Them a Meal for being the website I've used on many occasions for these very meal ministries. What a blessing it is to be a contributor to an organization after my own heart. Much love to you!

Read other recent articles by Janelle Paris:

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Maureen & Adina
Maureen & Adina

Welcome! We're thrilled you stopped by. Our own joys and sorrows have taught us that a well-timed meal delivered by a friend is one of the best gifts imaginable. In this space, we share our favorite recipes to take to friends, meal-taking tips, and other ways to care for those who are dear to you.

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