Guest post by Benjamin Mathew
“35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.” Mathew 25:35-36
With everything going on in our country and in the world, these verses had been deeply convicting for the missional community whom I meet with every week. We asked God how in this time we could step up; how through all of this, His love could shine brighter. When I found out that 1Foundation would be partnering with Loaves&Fishes for a service event, I praised God for His answer. Loaves&Fishes is the name of a local non-profit organization run by Margie Randall, lovingly known by members within the organization as “Margie Mom.”
The purpose of Loaves&Fishes is to help refugees fleeing from the political strife of their own nations establish a new life in the U.S. This past Saturday we met some of these refugees where they now stay; at an apartment complex in Southwest Houston. That afternoon we arrived with 6 cars full of donations and 26 volunteers. Because the refugees are mostly young families, the donations included diapers, toys, shoes, and clothes for every age and gender. Tables were set-up for residents to freely take what they needed and we watched as mothers picked out items for their children while children picked up items for their brothers and sisters.
After feeding the families pizza and halal, we rounded up all of the children to teach them the story of David and Goliath along with a few classic Sunday school songs. First up was “Praise be the Lord, Hallelujah” followed by “I’m in the Lord’s Army.” When I asked a little 4 year old guy what his favorite time of the event was, he responded that it was the singing session- and I had to agree. It was incredible to watch these kids enthusiastically shout out the songs they had just learned and perform all the actions.
Watching these kids praise God in the midst of their struggle was a humbling reminder that none of this was meant for our glory but rather for His glory. I was once again convicted of our very active role in the Gospel. As Jesus’ hands and feet we should use every opportunity to give to those who need and be an example of the grace that is only possible through Christ. As we closed in prayer that Saturday, I thought of every mother, father, and child living there and the home they left behind. I prayed that God would mold them and use them for His glory and that He would continue to allow them to experience His giving nature.