Saturday, July 24, 2010

2010 Thanksgiving Outreach - An Exciting Announcement

I'm not going to bore everyone with the details, but I have an exciting announcement.

While patronizing a local restaurant last night for the first time, we started talking about our outreaches. I've been praying for a few weeks "Lord, do you want our outreaches to cross the money savin' bridge?" (yes, I've seriously said "money savin' bridge" to the Creator of the universe). Well, I think He answered that question last night. Mrs. Cookie owns the old Evans Cafe on Kentucky and Washington (right across from our beloved Ray Ray's). She asked us what we were doing this year for Thanksgiving. I explained that our biggest challenge is finding somewhere that has shelter, power, and water. She got a look in her eyes, and-she is letting us use her restaurant for our Thanksgiving Outreach this year! We don't have to worry about shelter from the weather, using sternos to keep food warm, not having water or a restroom. We can invite these people in, give them a table to sit at and serve them...literally serve them. I have been praying for a building since last November. God has provided, and exceeded my expectations! I just wanted a building...I never expected a restaurant! We will have a full kitchen at our disposal.

I just can't tell you how excited I am about this. I literally can't sleep. All last night I kept thinking I was dreaming. There is something so surreal about this. Last year, we planned the Outreach in 3 weeks. Now, we've got way more time, and a place to have it! I was praying about this last night, and I am planning on cooking for 500 people. I know that seems crazy, but...we did 342 in June and didn't even realize it. Having a kitchen at our disposal makes it even more possible.

So, please pray about this and see if the Lord is calling you to volunteer or donate. I don't want Mrs. Cookie to have to go to any expense at all. I don't know the specifics yet, of course, but we're gonna need a LOT of food, and a LOT of help!

This is just so awesome. I wish I could explain how I'm feeling right now! Thanks to all of you for supporting us!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

July 2010 Nashville Flood Relief Trip

We will be taking another team to Nashville on July 31st for Flood Relief, partnering with Hands On Nashville. Please let me know if you're interested. The need is still great, as most people have forgotten about the flood.

You can get more information at

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

July 2010 Henderson Ball Field Outreach

Check out this awesome opportunity to serve. We've got 40+ slots we need to fill. Please let me know if you're interested. It is a great chance to show the Love of Christ!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

2010 Garvin Park Outreach - $300

Many of you have heard me refer to the "insurance policy" issue, but probably have no idea what that's all about. The original idea for the Garvin Park Outreach was "Bands & BBQ" - exactly what it sounds like. We were going to have bands on the stage, and serve BBQ. It was a disaster from the very beginning. We couldn't find bands. We had issues getting the BBQ smokers. We didn't have many volunteers. And then, the insurance policy. In order to use the stage, we had to fill out an application. If we were to have more than 300 people, we had to have an insurance policy - $5 million aggregate. I was told by a friend of our that it would be around $300. So, I worked my tail off to raise $300. There was an insurance agent (a friend of a friend) who was supposed to get the policy for us - we never heard from him. So, we started searching ourselves After about a week, I finally found one - in Australia, for $3000. That was obviously not going to happen. We tried talking to the Parks Department to see if they would lower the requirement, and they wouldn't. We noticed on the application that it said 300 people at any one time, not the entire day. I tried to argue this point, and they wouldn't budge. We eventually decided to kill the Bands & BBQ idea and just feed people. We really didn't want to, but it just seemed like our only option at that point. (and it worked out beautifully!)

So, we still had this magic number of $300, plus $51 left from Thanksgiving. One of our friends got the idea to pass out Need-It-Keep-It envelopes. He wanted to donate as much money as we had already raised ($300) to this cause. So, he made 300 envelopes with $1 each in them. A dear family friend also sent us 2 $10 Sonic Gift Cards to help the needy. Since there aren't any Sonic restaurants close to the area, I just stuck them in 2 of the envelopes, hoping it would bless someone, or they could bless someone with it. If you aren't familiar with this concept, please check out I LOVE the idea!

On Wednesday we made arrangements to meet Brandon Barnard for the first time. We sat down and counted how much we had left. $356. So, we kept $56 to use for the food pantries and gave the rest to Brandon. As we were standing there with him, I realized that we gave him $300. The same amount of the insurance policy. The same amount that went in the envelopes. The same amount that I was SO upset about. I just didn't know how we'd come up with that much money, and then when we changed the whole concept, I was SO upset about the fact that I had raised it for an un-needed insurance policy. God seriously slapped me across the face at that very moment...I really believe that he had this $300 planned all along for THIS purpose, not for the insurance policy. At that very moment, standing outside a firestation with a man who had just buried his 74 day old daughter, I realized that all the "disaster" we had went through was worth it. I always say when we're going through tough times that He has a plan for it, we just don't see it yet. It takes a while, but we always see how He worked in the situation.