Monday, August 6, 2012

looking back on back2school 2012


He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises.

It is time to rest and reflect on what God did this past weekend, and we should spend a great deal of time thanking God for all He has done.  Honestly, I am amazed, almost speechless and so very humbled over how God used the back2school event.

Remember it was 5 years ago that it began.  The idea came from a simple story of helping children in the coal country of West Virginia get ready for school.  The first year we shared with 180 students in our area.  The next year it grew to about 500.  The next two years we served 1,000 students each.  Making this the 5th year of this ministry, and over 1,400 students were served in 3 different locations.

There are some huge wins and points to celebrate this year.  I’d like to share from my point of view some of those wins, but I’d also like to hear from you what blessed you the most (send your story via email to info@thecommunityfellowship.org).

We have great volunteers who worked hard to prepare for and to pull off the event.  They came early and stayed late.  They gathered all that was needed and organized it into something we could manage and share with others.  The day came, and our volunteers shared the love of God with each of these students.  It was incredible.  I thank God for each and every volunteer.

1,500 students signed up to be part of the event, and 1,400 of them showed up.  It was such a blessing to watch those student’s faces light up as new shoes were put on their feet or as they got their backpack and school supplies.  The stories I have heard and the “thank you’s” that have come in are too many to count.  What an honor it is to share God and God’s love with people.  I am grateful for the 1,400 students and their families that we were able to serve.

You heard me right.  There were 3 locations where students could register and receive the items being given out.  Thank you Mt. Calvary Church and Pastor Gary Robertson for jumping in full force to make this year so much stronger and helping more children.  Thank you Mercy Cross Church and Pastor Jackie Poe for joining us and spreading even further our reach.  That’s right.  3 different churches from 3 different parts of the county that are from 3 different denominations and serving very different people all worked together in unison to help lots and lots of people.  God has been glorified.  As a team these 3 churches said to our community we can work together and make a difference.  I cannot leave out The Community Fellowship church family that I love to serve.  You guys and gals, once again, honored God by serving in bigger ways.  I am proud to be your pastor and friend!  I thank God for these 3 churches and their awesome people.

Finally and most importantly, I thank God.  What began with a small story has turned into a huge event that consumes our time, our minds and our lives in big ways.  That is we are consumed in a good way.  This year it was bigger than I ever thought and in ways that I had only dreamed.  By the way, I am not going to quit dreaming.  I believe that when the church works together we make a larger impact on those we serve.  That impact is bigger, louder and stronger because we gain strength from each other.  So I am dreaming bigger.  I am asking God for more churches in more locations to join in the effort of back2school.  Is your church interested?  Are you interested in helping?  Please consider how God would want you to be involved.  I am dreaming of a day when all across our region thousands of kids hear about hope from Jesus as they have their feet washed and prepare for a new school year.  This is an awesome opportunity.  Pray with me for God to increase our impact and save more people through back2school.

So anyone who becomes as humble as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.

If you were not able to attend the event, live in or near Henry County, Virginia and need help preparing your children for the new school year, please call The Community Fellowship church beginning on Tuesday of this week. 

Because we have a great God who loves people, we are committed to sharing His love with the people He sends our way.  There is much, much more to come.  I can’t wait!

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happy birthday, Julie

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