Stepping out of the front door is the hardest part of the entire run. I nodded at the friend who had dispensed these wise words and let them linger for a moment. I enjoy running, there is something about the quiet space that I treasure, but despite this, the first step – primarily, the decision to move myself out of the warmth of my home and onto a cold street, is often the hardest.
Sometimes the first step might be just a run, and sometimes in life it’s something more significant, where the outcome is less clear. Whatever it is, there is comfort to be found in not walking it alone.
I work for a signposting charity – the National Parenting Initiative, and when we speak to churches one of our aims is to encourage them that when looking to support families, they don’t have to take the first step out of the Church door alone – there are resources available, charities to partner with, courses to run. Often the response we receive is, I had no idea any of this was out there.
With the past year having brought such pain and created such need, stepping over the threshold (literal or psychological) and showing support, encouragement and grace to those around us is more important than ever.
Charities like Kids Matter are a brilliant resource for the church, providing the initial training needed to run their parenting programme, support and ongoing partnership. They are an organisation equipping the church to stand up and go out into the community boldly, with confidence that sees parents empowered and families thriving, even in the toughest of circumstances.
At a time when many churches are adjusting to meeting in person again, why not also allow this time to shape what it might mean to be part of your local community in a new way too?
Perhaps a step in a new direction lies ahead…
Kayte Potter is part of the team at The National Parenting Initiative, a UK Christian signposting charity.