I’m always humbled by how product that leaves our facility is used. And I’m always humbled by the hard work of our partners on the other end. Every shipment has a story. When you do large and small shipments, you become an organization filled with stories. More than you could ever tell.
This week was no different.
I have to admit though; I’m pretty stressed right now. We have a lot of things going on in our offices. We work on development projects, but re-focus in times of relief. This week when Ike hit, I admit, I thought, “I just can’t handle another disaster.” Here I am, at my office in Orange County, safe and sound, and I’M thinking, “God, there is just too much going on to deal with this!”
Truth be told, events are stressful. We have our big event in just 3 weeks now, October 10th. And Randy and Jana from Houston are the scheduled guest speakers. Here I am worrying about our event for weeks with logistics and promotions. I haven’t been able to focus enough on promotions because of all of the activities. Disasters take away from event promotion time as you focus on press releases, media, volunteer efforts, and everything else that goes along with raising funds to cover the costs of relief that you immediately respond to.
Today God flattened me. Who I am to be worrying about an event that God is in charge of? How could I be so concerned over the details of linens while doing the Lord’s work in the face of the real needs in front of me? It’s the Mary and Martha story. Finding the balance between the two isn’t always easy. You need both, my heart is more Mary, but my actions and nature are more Martha. This week the Martha in me had really taken over.
So when I received Jana and Randy’s email today I was struck by Jana’s comment that said, “O, I forgot, the Lord directs your steps”. Wow, that’s right! How could I have forgotten! This is God’s event and He is absolutely going to bring the right people to it and he will use me in spite of myself!
Don’t worry, I’ll keep promoting the event; it’s going to be wonderful! And with guest speakers like these, how could it not! But I’m also going to do a better job at focusing on what God would have me do instead of focusing on all of the things yet to be done. With all of the distractions I was humbled that God would use me in a tiny way to minister to others in spite of my wrong attitude.
Now I must share with you the email I received. Jana reminded me today of why I choose to do what I do:
J, Just in the nick of time!!! The truck came and I did the happy dance! Every pallet contained some kind of answer to prayer. We are so overwhelmed with gratitude for the thoughtfulness of what you sent, Beans, spaghetti, cake mixes, stuffing, cans of vegetables, etc.......I can do so much with these presents. The shampoo was so needed as were the sanitary products and shoes. We had NO blankets....just sheets and not enough of them. And pillows!!!!! How did you know? O, I forgot, the Lord directs your steps. For the first time in days, I feel a huge relief from the constant burden of producing meals from nothing. Tomorrow I will go thru the boxes and make gift boxes for each shelter resident and then we will begin the process of distributing some of the shipment to our neighbors who are still without power. We will probably take some to a couple of other local shelters if they actually get up and running. Right now, Red Cross tells us we are the only church shelter in the city. Surely more will come when they get power. Houston has taken a very hard hit, but we have much to be grateful for. We are not destroyed, just bruised and battered. We are blessed to have people like GIVING CHILDREN HOPE and all of your awesome partners to turn to in our time of crisis. You are truly hands of God. Thank you, from the depth of our hearts. With Sincere Gratitude, Randy and Jana Meeks