FaithFULL Kids–Sheila’s Testimony

Last week, Suzy Moore explained the impact FaithFULL Kids had on her life when she and her community group packed and distributed meals over Spring Break.  This week, Sheila Abel would like to share her experience of serving the recipients of the FaithFULL Kids backpack meals.

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“The biggest impact was the children. The children serving and the children receiving the help had only one commonality – GOD. Boundaries such as ethnicity, economic status, even age did not exist for that 30 minutes; they were all playing together enjoying each other, showing the adults that people of all backgrounds are the same inside; we want to love and be loved. For those children, playing tag and running with each other was how they loved on each other.

One child even came up to me and we created a beautiful bracelet for her out of tree bark and grass. Her little eyes were full of joy and gratitude mostly likely from the time an adult gave her. See, she plays with kids all the time; she stopped playing tag with the group and came over to the adults to join in our conversation.  Maybe to get attention that her little heart needed and our interaction gave her a little of God’s love. This I will remember because I am not in any way an “artsy-crafty person” so this was truly a God’s thing. (BTW that bracelet was really cute and would go with so many outfits, too. Next time I will be ready for her.)

The opportunity to have my kids go out and pack a few boxes of food and then hand it out provides them with a reminder of how blessed they are to always have access to food and how quickly something taken for granted could be taken away so easily. When we dropped of the food my kids were getting hungry, to provide an example for them of how it feels to be hungry, but to place others needs first. After the event they were very hungry and on the drive back home we had a delighted lesson on blessings and sharing those blessings with others.

The only risk I personally felt was how greedy I have seen myself become.  Returning home and viewing my pantry and freezer provided me with the realization that my family and I do not know truly know what it is like to ”be hungry”. Maybe we need to experiment during the summer, my children learn more by doing. 

If you are thinking about doing it, remember one thing – many of those truly in need want better they just need that hand to help them up. In all of the stories I can remember out of the Bible , God has always provided a hand from somewhere.  If He is calling you , ACT now–because the blessing you receive will have much more meaning now.”

If you would like to be a part of this awesome program, click here for more information, as well as the link to sign up!  Packing parties begin this week and will continue every Wednesday for the remainder of the summer.  Join in with what God is doing and bless children during these summer months!

FaithFULL Kids–Suzy’s Testimony

If you’ve been around WordServe for any time at all, you’ve probably heard us talk about FaithFULL Kids, a program that provides non-perishable food on the weekends to students at Huggins Elementary who receive free/reduced lunch during the school week.  We are passionate about this program because it meets basic needs in students’ lives, while providing an opportunity for them to experience the love of Christ.  This summer, we are expanding our ministry to pack and deliver meals on a weekly basis and we need your help!  One of our faithful participants, Suzy Moore, wanted to share a bit about how involvement in FaithFULL Kids has impacted her in a big way.  Over Spring Break, she and members of her community group delivered the food and found themselves making meaningful connections with the recipients.

“I knew that we were serving to form relationships inside of the Fulshear community, and at the time I arrived, I thought “I can’t even form meaningful relationships with my next door neighbors”, so I was very apprehensive about how I was going to form a relationship with a complete stranger that day. I observed Shelia Able make a connection with the most precious and sweet young girl named Erica. However, the door did not seem to open for me to make a connection on that day. Or so I thought. The next week while I was having lunch with my daughter at her elementary school, the same young girl with whom Shelia made a connection recognized me, and ran over to say “Hi Morgan’s Mommy! It’s me, Erica.” The light bulb went off for me. God called me to that serve event that Sunday to form a relationship, …with this young girl. (I was thinking it would be an adult/parent; I never saw young Erica coming – funny how God works that way). I know that I can make an impact in this community through serving Faithful Kids. I am certain that I have not fully experienced all that God will do for young Erica, but I am blessed to know that Faithful Kids allowed me to play a very tiny role that day to further His Kingdom, one (young) relationship at a time.”

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This Summer, join WordServe Kids each Wednesday from 10:30-11:30 AM as we pack meals for FaithFULL Kids at Guardian Taekwon-Do and deliver to Huggins Elementary for pick up by our FaithFULL Kids families.  During pick-up, we have fun and faith-fulled activities planned to help deepen our relationships with these children.  This is a great way for your kids to share their faith and serve the community during the summer months!  This opportunity isn’t just limited to parents and kids–we want everyone to get involved!

To sign up, visit the FaithFULL Kids website here!

Spotlight on Serving – WordServe Compassion Team

There are many people at WordServe who exemplify joyful servants of Jesus.  Over the next month, we’re going to highlight just a handful of people who represent WordServe’s mission of “Guiding people to grow as joyful servants of Jesus.”

This week’s joyful servant of Jesus is Rachel Dillon, from WordServe’s Compassion Team.  Our Compassion Team is the one that reaches outside our walls to share Jesus’ love with the world through serving the community, both locally and globally.

 

Rachel runs a growing program called “FaithFULL Kids” that helps kids on free or reduced lunch programs at Huggins Elementary School make sure they have enough to eat when they’re not in school.  Imagine what weekends, holidays, and especially summer break might look like for these little ones… with no guarantees for a steady supply of food.  Thankfully, Rachel and the FaithFULL Kids servants provide not only food to fill their stomachs, but love and encouragement as well.

Rachel’s heart for children and her desire to take action have propelled FaithFULL kids into a life-changing ministry for both kids and volunteers alike.  Rachel truly represents a joyful servant of Jesus who also guides others to grow in their faith and in their service.

We asked Rachel four questions to gain some insight on why she serves:

1.  Why do you serve?

I originally started serving because I thought it would be good to help others. I continue to serve because of the indescribable joy it brings to all involved, recipients and servants alike!

2.  Why do you serve on the Compassion Team?

 I have been blessed by the Grace of God more than I could ever deserve. I serve in the Compassion area because my heart aches for people who struggle. I know that I alone cannot fix or change other people’s circumstances, but I can show someone they are important, loved, and needed. I can be a helping hand to lighten someone else’s load or a glimmer of hope that our current circumstances are only temporary.

3.  How do you stay joyful?

How do you not stay joyful in serving? I love meeting new people with new enthusiasm for a cause. I love knowing that what I am doing makes someone’s day brighter and easier. But most importantly, I know serving makes God smile!

4.  How do you see lives being made different because of your service?

By serving with my family, I see a difference in my daughters. They look for ways to raise money for different organizations, instead of raising money for toys or treats for themselves. They also take ownership of the projects we serve on and find ways to lead, such as preparing the stations at FaithFULL Kids, getting servants signed in, and inviting their friends to join them. I also see the recipients of FaithFULL Kids’ lives changing because they have shared that receiving the extra food not only helps fill their tummies, but also lets them know others care for them, are praying for them, and want to see them succeed.

Rachel is one of many joyful servants of Jesus at WordServe Church.  If you would like to serve with WordServe’s Compassion team, visit wordserve.org/serve and sign up today!  If you’re not sure if the Compassion Team is right for you, stay tuned for more to come!!!

Either way, we invite you to come check us out at WordServe Church, where “Life is Different!”

Connecting with FaithFULL Kids

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Recently, WordServe hosted a Compassion event after Sunday morning worship for families to pack boxes of food for children participating in FaithFULL Kids, a program that provides non-perishable foods to kids on free/reduced lunch at Huggins Elementary.  Through this opportunity, families worked side-by-side to elevate others as God’s masterpieces, joyfully serving children who might not have otherwise had food over the Spring Break holiday.

One of WordServe’s community groups committed to greet and encourage families that came to pick up their food boxes before Spring Break began.

Cheryl Dent, Director of WordServe Kids shared, “We were giving the drop off locations a try with the hope that we could begin to build relationships with the families. It was wonderful to watch the kids that came to serve and the ones that came to pick up the food immediately connect and begin to play tag and hide and seek with each other.”

However, the children were not the only ones who connected on a deeper level.

Cheryl continued, “One of my favorite memories of that afternoon was watching the interaction of one of the kids there who came up to one of the adults. She showed her a hollow stick and the adult asked her if she would like her to make a bracelet out of it. It was special to watch the two of them interact as they found pine needles and tied them together and then looped the pieces of the hollow stick on it. The little girl’s smile and the lady’s smile as they worked together made this God moment a special memory for me. The next time our community group met, another adult there said she saw that little girl at her child’s school at lunch time. The adult was able to greet that child by name and hug her! It will be great to see how God will use just a small interaction to build relationships! God is at work as we transform our community one relationship at a time!”

If you are interested in participating in FaithFULL Kids, or have questions about this ministry, check out http://www.wordserve.org/faithfullkids for more information!

Here are a few pictures of WordServe Kids helping to make life different!

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How Long, Lord?

“O LORD, how long will you forget me? Forever? How long will you look the other way? How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul, with sorrow in my heart every day?” (Psa 13:1–2 NLT)

The injustices in this world are maddening, aren’t they?  Why should some have so much, and others so little? And why doesn’t God do something about it?

Do you know what I think?  I think God IS doing something about injustice and hardship… he’s inviting us to partner with him to bring restoration and peace.

A young mother who is now doing her best to take care of her young children plus some extended family might have been thinking, “How long, Lord?”  With 8 children to care for and a house that needs some help, she approached WordServe to see if we could help.  After planning, consideration, and on-site evaluation, WordServe’s Compassion team decided they could take on her house repairs.

Mind you, this won’t be a weekend project.  This will be many weekends, all done by volunteers on their time off.  As I thought about the scope of work, the enemy’s voice started up:

  • WordServe can’t do this… it’s too big
  • The Church will promise and get hopes up, but you won’t be able to deliver
  • You’ll do more harm than good

Indeed, as I rode out to meet the family with our Director of Compassion and our project manager, I couldn’t help but wonder, “How can WordServe possibly pull this off?”

big prayer road signAs this thought crossed my mind, we rounded the next turn. I couldn’t help but notice the street sign:

Big Prayer Road

No… I’m not making that up.  That’s the road name!  And that’s the answer.

God knew long before my doubts that there was a need.  God has been preparing the work site and the workers.  And God is inviting us to join in what God will pull off… not WordServe.

The Psalm above started with a cry for help, but don’t stop reading there.  And more importantly, don’t live there!  Have the faith to see the end of the story, even before the end is clear:

But I trust in your unfailing love. I will rejoice because you have rescued me. I will sing to the LORD because he is good to me.” (Psa 13:5–6 NLT)

Want to help?  How about starting with some “Big Prayer?”

Serving joyfully,
Bill

Visit http://www.wordserve.org/habitatforhuggins for regular updates.  Volunteers welcome!

 

FulSERVE 2013

On October 13, 2013, WordServe Church teamed up with First United Methodist Church, Fulshear, to joyfully care for the needs of people in our community. Instead of our regular Sunday worship service, we offered our acts of service as worship to the God who loves us all–and we saw God make a difference in our lives and the lives of those we helped. People packed kits for Katy Christian Ministries and care packages for Living Water International, while others shoveled and raked and repaired homes in the rain, and residents at The Oaks of Brookshire nursing home enjoyed visitors and music. The morning of October 13, we didn’t just go to church. We WERE the Church. Take a look at some of the highlights.

FulSERVE 2013 Highlight Video

FulSERVE Highlights 2013 from WordServe Church on Vimeo.

“Thank You, WordServe!”

We got a text on the first day of school from a WordServe mom whose sons go to Huggins:

New backpack hooks at Huggins Elementary make a huge difference!

New backpack hooks at Huggins Elementary make a huge difference!

Lots of “thank you’s” from the teachers this morning! The backpack racks look great! Imagine 562 backpacks on the floor! This project really made a difference here. It warms my heart to think about the scripture written on the back of the racks and the prayers prayed for the children and teachers. Life really is different! Great way to start the year! Continue reading

FaithFULL Kids

FFK Summer 2013 Hayden decorating food box

Having fun decorating the food boxes with messages of God’s love!

This summer, over 100 people came together to pack 225 boxes of food for children in our community who didn’t have enough to eat. People of all ages, faiths, and stages of life joined with WordServe Church and First UMC Fulshear to help feed these hungry kids. Here are a few stories from the summer packing parties:

A first grader from Huggins Elementary gave $20 to FaithFULL Kids. She raised the money by selling lemonade in her neighborhood.

A Girl Scout Troop in Cypress raised $500 for FaithFULL Kids after they learned about the organization from the Fulshear Girl Scout Troop leader.

A father who came to pix up boxes of food for his family was hesitant to have people pray with him during the first distribution in June, but in July, he held out his hands, eager for someone to pray with him.

A sixth grader from WordServe Youth boldly walked up to someone they didn’t know picking up a box for their family and prayed with them.

FaithFULL Kids was so embraced by the whole community, we raised more money and collected more food than we needed. That means we can start the school year with a surplus! We also received a Moody Grant from a Methodist Foundation to help us as we continue the ministry throughout the school year.

We love watching God move through the Fulshear community when his people come together and joyfully care for the needs of their neighbors! Join FaithFULL Kids for a Wednesday night packing party this year, or find out more about how you can support this ministry by clicking here.

Spare Change, Life Change

WordServe Kids at Living Water International

A group from WordServe Kids visit Living Water International’s headquarters in Stafford

Kynley and Avery were each saving money for something special–until a field trip convinced them to give money away instead.

“Before I went to Living Water International, I was saving money to buy an American Girl Doll,” says Kynley, 8.  Avery, 6, chimes in, “I was saving for a puppy.” Both girls realized they could save money for something even better. “We’re collecting money for Living Water so they can give it to people who don’t have clean water to drink,” says Avery.  Continue reading