But we were also able to get in some wonderful ministry work. Saturday I delivered some clothes and bread to an elementary school boy in a neighborhood. I also went by and checked on our favorite Hispanic family...you know, the shoe boys, the no power boys, etc.
I wanted to ask their mom if a friend, Angela Battle, could pick them up and take them to the Stem parade that afternoon and bring pizzas home for dinner.
Praise the Lord they had power :) And the mom allowed Angela to pick up the boys and take them to the parade. But not only did they get to go to the parade, they got to be IN the parade!!!
Angela said they had such a blast!!!
Then Sunday Dean picked them up for church and they went to Open Arms Fellowship with us for Sunday morning service where they got to witness a baptism and communion. They did look a little confused at the whole communion thing...but never fear...they will be getting a lesson on it from me soon :) I want to have the time to explain it in depth where they can understand.
(Funny that the Lord had already told me about 3 weeks ago that I needed to be thinking about explaining and having communion out in the trailer park one of the nights when we go out. So now it's a definite lesson in the works.)
After church I took them back to our house for some playing in the yard time - and they also came in and watched a movie and had a little popcorn with my kids and my sister's kids and Dean's brother's son. They were just a normal part of the family! Before they left I was able to give them a garbage bag and a half of some donated boys clothes. They were so very excited and grateful to receive these items.
Open Arms Fellowship is going to be sponsoring this family for Christmas and has a list of immediate needs and Christmas items needed. We are so very thankful that the Lord has allowed us to be a bridge between this family and local body of Christ! They have stepped up without any questions asked.
My main concern with this family, and with any family, is this.........I do not want to begin overloading these families with toys and material things to the point where they think that stuff is actually important. This is a major problem in America, and the American church unfortunately. We have allowed material things to be more important than our relationship with Christ. Our household is very much included, but we are trying daily to repent of this and change our ways!
God calls us to make Him #1....and that is a big deal. Please pray that above all else we will remain in Him and make this work His. He doesn't want these children to be happy with the things we give them....He wants us to give them HIM! We don't want to make a name for ourselves....we don't want to cause people to become members of a specific church....we want them to become our true brothers and sisters in Christ and become members of His Kingdom. And we hope that the love we display to them will show them just a part of how Christ loves them, and will cause them to ask "why do they do this? why are they different? why do they even care?" IT'S ALL BECAUSE OF CHRIST!!!
Also this weekend Dean was able to take a mattress to his brother that is paralyzed from the waist down. This was a used mattress, but I was friends with the lady who had it so I was sure it was okay for him to use. Big thanks to Deborah Reliford and Dean's mom Marcia for putting in some money to buy the mattress. Dean's brother Tommy was very grateful for the mattress and said it was extremely comfortable!
Then last night I was able to meet with Elizabeth Allen...a lady from Roxboro who has been collecting donations for her family members that lost their home and all of their possessions in a house fire in Halifax, VA recently. I was able to provide some clothes and bed linens from our ministry donations, and I also went to WalMart to buy some necessary toiletries for them to use. Some of the family members are still in the burn unit at the hospital awaiting surgeries....so please keep this family in your prayers. They have a long road ahead for recovery - but with the help of some local believers and family members, they can get through it.
I almost forgot that on Saturday I went to an outreach at Morreene Road Apartments in Durham. Frontlinez Outreach Ministries headed this up. I had a wonderful time serving the folks out there and met a new buddy - Ricky. I can't wait to team up with Frontlinez again soon, and will probably be doing so next month. Frontlinez goes out a Durham community on the third Saturday of every month. Next month it will be at Hoover Road Apartments. I was so excited to hear this because I give bread donations to Mr. Michael Harley each week in Hoover Road Apartments - and he keeps saying that we need to come and do an outreach there :) So now we will be!
I've posted a few pictures below from the outreach....sorry for their lack of quality - they're from my Blackberry.
Until next time :)
Loving Radically Through Christ,