In Racing Weekends I encouraged you to find your community, to reach out, and to make the effort to BE part of something bigger than yourself.

What happens if you don’t have a community to call your own? I want to tell you a little about my friend Lisa.

Lisa has a dinner at her house on Friday nights. Someone brings the meal and a group of hungry families get to enjoy time around her dining room table. Those who gather share stories of their week, they talk about their feelings and their frustrations, they laugh at their kid’s antics, and enjoy watching each other’s kids grow as the weeks turn into months which turn into years.

Grace's Table Veggie Tray

It’s a dining room table I’ve sat at many times, sharing life, smiling at small children as they try to stuff whole watermelon slices in their mouths, and it’s where I’ve felt like my true self.

Wouldn’t you like to drop into dinner once a week?

To a place where you’re welcome to enjoy a meal without the facade we have to put on for the rest of the world?

A place where everybody knows your name and likes you just the same?

Me too!

However, this particular community isn’t one where I attend weekly, mainly because of the 150 miles each way! This community, Grace’s Table, has captured my heart and because of that Dave and I partner with Grace’s Table in a variety of ways. We have prepared meals, photographed families, and even wrangled kiddos as their mom’s get a chance to enjoy some adult time with well…other adults. It doesn’t end there. We partner with Grace’s Table financially each month, and have most recently enjoyed helping them with a special project (more on that later) *smiles*

Grace's Table Mom Kids

Grace’s Table is the community that Lisa built. It is a safe place for teen moms to come for a great meal for herself and her children. The moms get time to eat with their kids before joining the group for about an hour to chat about real-life and practical topics, like self-care, relationships, sex, boundaries, and life skills.

Can I sign up? Seriously… isn’t this simply amazing to be able to DO life with others in a place where you can be honest, real, and vulnerable? I’m a little jealous.

I digress…

Lisa, a one-time teen mom, found that she didn’t have a community when she was raising her now 22-year old son. She dreamed (and worked her butt off) of “some day” when she would have a home and a big table to host teen moms who could use a meal served with a side of great conversation.

Grace’s Table’s small beginnings four years ago has turned into a community of over 25 moms and their children AND there is a supportive community of volunteers who help make meals, wrangle kids, build vegetable gardens, and right now there are MANY volunteers who are giving their time and talents to complete a basement remodel so there is more space so Lisa can reach out to schools in the new school year so the word gets out for more teen moms to join!

Grace's Table Windows

Grace’s Table is now much more than Friday night dinners, they give mom’s a night out for Mother’s Day and a family night at Christmas time where the families are treated to a grand dinner with presents! Grace’s Table helps moms with counseling as well as support them during high school graduations, moving into apartments, and other life journeys both hard and wonderful.

So I have a question for you today…

Will you donate to Grace’s Table so they can continue to create a place where a teen mom can find encouragement no matter where the journey leads her?

Please help young women embrace her story with a sense of adventure!

Tax-Deductible Charitable Checks can be made payable to Grace’s Table 835 Richmond ST NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504.  Or you can take action here (be sure to add 4% for those pesky credit card fees!)

BE THE REASON young women find a sense of BELONGING.

After you’re done sending Grace’s Table a donation, check your calendar and ask someone to share a meal with you! Great conversation isn’t reserved to teen moms gathered around Grace’s Table… start your own community… one meal is all it takes!

Thank you for your generosity!