My wife opened up the newsletter from the church where she teaches week day preschool, and there was an article from their pastor. It speaks to how God is working around our back2school outreach. Read on:
"It's A God Thing"
We have two members of Fieldale UMC ion the Board of Directors of the Martinsville Salvation Army Center. During a meeting on on Thursday August 19th, a need for school supplies was mentioned.
It seems that Lt. Knotts was told to expect about 15 children for Vacation Bible School, she prepared 20 backpacks with school supplies just in case a few more children showed up. They had 50 children instead! She rushed to prepare a few more school packs, but she still lacked 20, which she would give to the children the following in Saturday.
Fieldale UMC is one of the local United Methodist churches that participate in the Clothe-A-Child ministry, which gives school supplies and gently used clothing to nearly 400 children. We had some extra supplies, and so we thought we might offer some of them to the Salvation Army.
Someone then suggested that we call Rev. Michael Harrison of Community Fellowship church to see if he had any leftover backpacks. They had given about 1,000 backpacks with school supplies in the community. A few phone calls later, we learned that most of the extra backpacks had been shipped off to a ministry in West Virginia, bu there were 23 backpacks left, and we were welcome to give them to the Salvation Army.
As we were gathering supplies, a phone call came in and Lieutenant Knotts said she needed 3 more bags making her need 23. As we collected the school supplies from the warehouse, Charlotte Brooks, the coordinator for C-A-C, reached in and we had exactly 23 rulers. Was it a strange series of coincidences, or could it just be a God thing as we work together?
Thanks to Pastor Tom Durrence of Fieldale UMC for sharing this story of how God is working. It is important that we recognize the power of working together. When many churches lock arms and work together, bigger things and more things will happen. More people will hear and see God through us.
I believe that the future of our back2school outreach is bright, and it going to go to a whole new level as we partner with more and more organizations and churches. In the first part of 2012 we will be asking people to join us. It is going to be awesome.
Let me work through a couple other pieces of this story. On August 6th during our back2school outreach 938 students received the shoes, backpacks, school supplies, clothes, and haircuts we were able to provide. There were pastors from several area churches involved. 2 of the pastors assisting us were leaders from the Clothe-A-Child outreach. Together we reached thousands of people all for the glory of God. Amazing. That is just what it is.
As Pastor Durrence wrote, "It's a God thing." And I want more of that. How about you?