Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Current Study: Advent
Today’s Topic: Modern Day Miracle of Love
Scripture Reading: 2 Corinthians 9:8, 10-11 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.
Monday morning I received this email – For those of you who don’t know yet, we served 196 people last night! What an amazing night, and that the Lord multiplied the food so all were served, with some left over!
Several weeks ago in church we learned about a new ministry in our city that is an outreach to the unsaved trapped in the bondage of drugs, alcohol, homelessness and unemployment. The founders of the ministry are truly acting under God’s power and in response to God’s vision. As a congregation, we accepted the challenge to get involved and help them in any way we can.
One of our shepherd groups in our church decided to prepare and serve the weekly meal served at the ministry on Sunday evenings to about 50 people. They recruited additional volunteers from the congregation to help provide food because this would be their Christmas dinner and they should expect up to 100 people. Everything was organized and prepared to meet that need. Little did they know that God had much bigger plans.
Someone decided to promote the event on Facebook. A big story about the ministry appeared in the paper on Sunday. The meal planning team did not consider the effects of such publicity, but they had been praying. One of the members of the planning team put it this way as he wrote about what happened.
We had all been praying about how we were going to serve all the people predicted last night…Since none of us had experience cooking for that number of people, we started discussing the menu, and since B-side has no cooking or storage or cleaning facilities, we had to do everything at home or church and take it there in roasters. We ended up getting about 50 lbs of ribs, six small turkeys, Cheesy Hash Browns, Baked Beans, and buttered dinner rolls. We also managed to get 90 cupcakes and a large sheet cake. One member of our team said she had heard that one pound of turkey could feed two people, so while it might be close, we thought we could feed up to 100. As you may have noticed, there was an article about B-side in the Sunday paper, so I was praying that we would have enough to serve a good meal to MORE than 100. We got setup with extension cords and started tripping circuit breakers everywhere. As we started serving someone came by and said we were up to 165 people and still coming. We all stared at each other, praying for God to provide. HE DID! We had enough to serve over 190 people. It wasn’t quite what Jesus did with 5 loaves and 3 fish, but God provided. What is even more surprising is that only the last 6 plates didn’t get potatoes, and the last 2 didn’t get beans, and the last of the ribs went on the last plate. I saw one of our men putting the last of the turkey in a zip lock bag, and there may have been enough to make 2-3 turkey sandwiches!!!!! God not only provides, He does it in the exact portions needed! We serve an awesome God, and if you are willing to stretch yourselves a little, He will use you to do amazing things!!!! What a blessed night.
Here’s the email we got from Matt and Suzi, the Directors of B-Side Community in Eau Claire:
We can’t thank you enough for your serving hearts tonight!!! We never expected that many people and for there to be enough food like there was, was incredible… thank you for all your planning and hard work… I pray through the craziness people were blessed and even though there wasn’t an actual message tonight, that Christ’s love and message through serving and loving people was evident… I know it was powerful for me to watch God tonight… in so many ways! You all were amazing!! Thank you thank you!!! What a blessing!
God Bless you!!!
Suzie and Matt
It is in giving that God provides the greatest blessing. He has promised to always provide enough for us to give generously. Merry Christmas, and happy giving!