Updated: Mar 4, 2020

Many years ago, my dad gave me a poem titled "Anyway". He was a letter carrier in our little town (or so it was then) and he found the following poem in the Christmas edition of his Letter Carrier magazine. Dad often clipped out little poems or articles and gave them to each of his children (5 of us) from time to time. Just little scraps of paper...or so it seemed. I would read them, tell him how nice they were and take them home. When dad passed away in 2012, I took a plastic tote out of my closet. It held cards and letters, momento's from over the years and a few of the little scraps of paper that dad had given to me. It was then that I realize that these little scraps of paper were not just poems and articles...they were life lessons. Quiet...unspoked...words that meant so much to him. Words that he wanted to share with us. I read the following poem at his funeral because I wanted to share one of the life lessons that he had shared with me. I have found much encouragement in this short little poem over the years and I hope you do too. When life is hard...when people are cruel...when I am tired beyond tired I pull out this poem and read it again. I reminisce about my dad and have a good cry. Then I lift my head high and carry on "Anyway". I hope you find as much encouragement from my dad's poem as I have.

Anyway ( Dad - "Fred's" Poem) People are unreasonable, illogical and self-centered. LOVE THEM ANYWAY. If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives. DO GOOD ANYWAY. If you are successful you win false friends and true enemies. SUCCEED ANYWAY. The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow, DO GOOD ANYWAY. Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. BE HONEST AND FRANK ANYWAY. People favor the underdogs but follow only top dogs. FIGHT FOR SOME UNDERDOGS ANYWAY. What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. BUILD ANYWAY. People really need help but may attack you if you help them. HELP PEOPLE ANYWAY. Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth. GIVE THE WORLD THE BEST YOU’VE GOT ANYWAY.

This article was reprinted from the holiday issue of the Kansas Letter Carrier.

I have prayed for each of you already this morning!! Hope you have a blessed Friday! Remember your quiet time...and don't forget to treat yourself kindly!! We are all on this mission together!Welcome to SteppingOut - making footprints with Jesus! My name is Arlene Clark and I have been in children's ministry for 35+ years. I love what I am doing however, God is leading me in a new and exciting here I am, stepping out with Jesus.

With God's prompting (more like shoving) I am stepping out to help encourage and equip children's leaders (especially those serving in volunteer positions).

Over the past few years, I have noticed a trend with Children's Directors/Leaders...they have become discouraged (Satan's #1 tool)...and with good reason!

Many Children's Department are: - Often under staffed - Often under funded - Often the least appreciated - Often short on volunteers - Often thought of as a babysitting service - Often left to function on their own

Many Children's Director/Leader (especially a volunteer) - Often spends their own money to provide for the needs of the children - Is worn out - Is often unappreciated - Is seldom recognized - Often wears many hats - Often feels lonely and not a part of the church - Has more responsibilities than many other leaders in the church...but is still left to handle everything themselves.

I'm here to help you....

If you have been called to serve (paid or unpaid) where you understand! And yes...a volunteer CAN BE called as well as a paid director/worker. God is all about the heart...not just the degree.

As you can guess, I have a HUGE heart for volunteers...and there is a reason. I have served in a volunteer position (BY CHOICE) for over 35 years.

Because of God's incredible blessings in my personal life, I have been able to step in and serve when and where God calls. I have no financial ties (a true blessing that I am very aware of...and thank God for every day) to prevent me from making a move when God calls me to a new ministry...but I definitely have heart ties. Which makes change extra hard. I know that you understand! These little ones mean everything to me...and I am sure they do to you as well!

Over the past few years, God has blessed me with specific gifts and talents that I now want to share with the many volunteers (and paid leaders) who are serving day in and day out with our children. I know it's hard...but I am here to help!

On this page, I will be: - Encouraging You - Lifting you each in prayer - Sharing new ideas, events and activities to help with your calendar planning - Creating flyers, forms, etc for those of you who need a little help! - Tuesday Tips - Each Tuesday, I will try to post a new tip about something I have learned over my 35+ years of ministry - Sharing lists of monthly or seasonal activities that you can incorporate into your calendar - Posting mission and outreach ideas - Etc. etc. etc.

I pray that I can be of service to you (in any way... just ask) with this wild, wonderful, crazy, maddening thing we call Children's Ministry.

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