a cup of cold water. #servedenver

last tuesday i had the opportunity to take photos of the thanksgiving banquet at the fort collins rescue mission.

over 100 people received a delicious thanksgiving meal, around a table, being served to them by volunteers in aprons with smiles on their faces. 


it's easy to have an "us" and "them" mentally with the homeless, isn't it?
when we drive by and see their signs on the street corner. 
or they walk by and secretly we hope that they won't ask us for money.
we feel ashamed of ourselves and yet unwilling or unable or unsure about how to help.

but on tuesday as i walked around the room and looked at people's faces, i was reminded of that the whole of humanity was represented in that room.
young and old.
men and women.
those who loved the camera and those who refused to be photographed.
some with deep hurt imprinted on every part of their face and others with smiles that spoke of deep hope and courage.

maybe we aren't so different after all.
maybe the cords that bind us are much stronger than the lines that may divide.

because those who are in need and those who serve, need each other and need the grace of God desperately.

and when we give, or we sit down at a table and engage with strangers, or we refill a cup of cold water (matt. 10:42), or we snap pictures, it is in those moments that God speaks most clearly.
He is very clearly there when we serve.
changing our hearts and revealing his love for everyone, no matter their story, or their past, or where they sleep each night.


hopefully this holiday season, you have a chance to serve the people around you.
not because you are any better or because you want the ego boost that can come with giving a little of your time or energy, but because during the Christmas season, you want to experience more of the grace and hope that comes when you live and work for the good of others.

each wednesday in december, jenny, sarah, and i will be joining with the denver rescue mission and posting around this topic of service (#servedenver). no matter where you live, feel free to join us.


  1. Wonderful lesson, girl! I hope to do something to serve others this season.

  2. I am so guilty of subconsciously acquiring an "us vs. them" mentality. Love being reminded the reality of it: We are all people, all in need of grace and love.

  3. Anne Lamott always quotes Ram Dass who said: "We're all just walking each other home." This makes me think of that image. I love it. Well done, Hannah. (Love that photo, btw.)

  4. We enjoyed having you photograph the event! I really enjoyed reading this post. Thanks for all you are doing!

  5. What a blessing you were! Since Nate and I aren't going to be near family for Christmas, we're going to serve dinner at a shelter on Christmas day. I am so excited to serve in the way Jesus did to celebrate His birth!