As one who is approaching the Slow-Go category, the need to see how this group of people can continue to feel valuable grows ever more important. Even procrastination can be an excuse for slowing down and not being involved as might be possible.
As followers of Jesus Christ we should seek as many ways as possible to enhance the value of each person that will show God still considers them of value, and they are able to be a meaningful part of his Kingdom. If our imagination keeps forcing these folks back into old ways no longer reasonable, then we need the imagination of others to show them new activities to explore.
Modern technology has helped many overcome what was once physically debilitating. New avenues of mission work allow old skills to be enjoyed by more people. Communication methods allowing worldwide contact have created the opportunity for a Slow-Go in one country to be in contact with others with similar limitations half a world away.
Consider these ideas as you help a Slow-Go friend or relative get a fresh start in life. Some involve travel outside the home. Remember, a Slow-Go individual should never be seen as homebound. That may come soon enough. Seek to provide as many opportunities to get out of their residence and associate with others as possible. Other opportunities for service can be accomplished at home.
Being an active prayer warrior is never a function of mobility. While at home the Slow-Go individual can provide prayer support for the congregation in the same way the Can’t-Go individual does. As a prayer warrior the individual can be assigned a specific group of people to hold in prayer such as a list being served by a deacon or elder. The prayer list can also include church members away from home such as students, those serving in the military, and specific missionaries working on home and foreign fields.
From home, ministry can be performed by use of the telephone through contacting absentees from Bible study groups or ministry programs. A Slow-Go can be the contact person for the homebound individual living in their own home or in a support facility. The telephone allows the relationship between church and college student to be maintained. The Slow-Go doesn’t have to be a family member. A voice from the church family back home can make a world of difference to the college student or military personnel who may be thousands of miles away. When a phone call needs a little extra emphasis, the written letter and card can add that little extra bit of love.
With transportation available, other possibilities for service open up. The Slow-Go can be a part of local mission projects. It might even be that products made at home can then be delivered on a local basis, or become part of a major project sent elsewhere. Visitation to those who cannot get out is a proven blessing to all.
Leadership can be provided in local Bible study, mission action, or community focused groups. The church office may sometimes needs someone to handle reception or phone calls for a brief time. A Slow-Go can offer past experience and a love of service at such a time when a volunteer is needed.
As I have learned from experience, an older person can learn to appreciate instead of fear the digital age. Social media is a blessing when used appropriately. A Slow-Go can learn how to manage web sites, facebook and similar social media outlets, and through them communicate with the world either personally or in the name of the congregation. Help a Slow-Go individual learn the new tricks of our century and you will give them reason to face each day with a smile on their face.