Monday, November 17, 2008

The Sunday out reach cookout

As our Sunday afternoon cookout outreach drew closer, we gathered to pray, we planned , we tweaked the plan, and kept praying . Friday had gotten colder, Saturday was colder still. Undaunted , we added hot cocoa to our menu, cleaned up the Smith crawfish boiler and refilled the propane tank so we could make a big pot of hot water for cocoa. We were ready for whatever.......................it was a stretch out of the compfort zone of several of our folks to not only "do" the cookout, but open themselves up to talking to total strangers, but we were excited!! Sunday was as beautiful as a day could have been!! Clear, blue, NOT windy (a special order kind of day for Oklahoma) and NOT COLD!!!!!!!
Our crowd was far smaller than we'd antiicpated and I am not sure now where the original number of folks estimated came from, but you never know even inviting kids to a birthday party who will show up even when RSVP is invoked. But people came! A lot of people drove by and kept on driving, so we waved, but people DID COME and STAY and we had a great time! Gideon and our son in law Jon, BIG muscular guys, were playing touch football in the field adjoining our church and the complex, with the high scool and elemtary (and a few even younger) boys and having a blast! They invited the college aged guys who came to eat with us and THAT was fun to see!! JUST FUN...........not competition, even though there have to be 2 teams to play football, but pure fun! AND aside from Gideon's shirt being torn by Jon, NO INJURIES, NO "HE CHEATED" NO "THEY WON'T LET ME PLAY!" !!!!! Younger church kids walked dogs for several people so they could get food and we just hung out with our guests. MANY stayed for quite a while. Our conversations were varied in depth and content, but I know GOD'S LOVE was poured over the people who came by! My last act of out reach for the afternoon was to prepare a large tray of food for the staff of my nail salon, which is across the street from church and the apartments. Several of them work all day every Sunday but live in this complex. They were quite touched that we'd thought of them, as were several customers who heard the conversation when I brought the chaffing dish full of burgers, bag of buns , vegetables and of course many bags of cookies. It was a quick ministry moment because the nail salon was busy and it wasn't my intention to come off patting us on the back forbringing something over, but to quietly bring some more tangible love of Jesus to a group of hard working Vietnamese people whom I have come to love. Who knows what God started or watered or tilled with that over-purchased for event..............................we donated quite a bit to the homeless shelter after the fact, froze the cooked and uneaten meat for our next church Sunday fellowship dinner and overall felt like we had obeyed God's instructions for our little part of the Body to reach out. As we were closing up, the song "IF WE ARE THE BODY....." came on the radio in Charlie's truck...it felt humbling to know that in a small way our Community Free Church hands WERE reaching....... let's see if we reached deeply enough to cause any of those people to come to our church or go to some other church because GOD'S LOVE is drawing them in !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1 comment:

Jill said...

SOUNDS amazing!

Praise God for the weather and every heart that showed up to meet your group!

Love you - Jill