The Kingdom of God

There are incredibly rare, but beautiful moments on this earth where we can see the kingdom of God right before our eyes. We had one of those moments today at House of the Harvest. Renee (on the right) approached me on Coreen’s (on the left) behalf. She told me Coreen’s sad, sad story. Coreen has a daughter and two grandsons living with her. Her daughter is battling cancer. She receives treatments once a week that cause her to be sick for three or four days. The little bit of food that we give her just isn’t enough. Coreen has been ashamed to ask for more for several weeks now.

Renee shared all of this with me and politely asked if Coreen could get more food. I called her over and talked with her about her situation. Coreen then shared with me that Renee has been giving her half of her food each week after going through the line. Renee began to fight back tears. Every week, Renee was splitting her food with Coreen, simply because she knew it wasn’t enough. What makes it even more beautiful…these two ladies met at House of the Harvest. Coreen shared her story and Renee was moved by it…to the point of action.

With all that is going on in our world today…how amazingly beautiful to see an example of love that transcends racial barriers, selfishness, and pride. This, my friends, is the kingdom of God! What an amazing example for all of us.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Meet the Taylors

TaylorOne of the coolest things about House of the Harvest is being able to hear different people’s stories…and we hear some really good ones. To the left is the Taylor family. I first met Kelly when I did half of my administrative internship at Walnut Grove School. I only spent a week there, but I was blessed with the opportunity to meet some really great people. Kelly was one of them. Continue reading “Meet the Taylors”

Testimonies: Shannon, Rosemary, and Emma

faulksAs I sit here and think of how The House of the Harvest has impacted my life and my families, I really do not know where to start, but I will start at the beginning…

On February 2, 2015 we lost my dad to a massive stroke. As we laid him to rest my husband and I knew what we had to do. We could not leave my mama to live by herself. I knew we had some serious convincing to do. But she did agree and we have had her since. When she did come to live with us I knew I needed to try and keep her busy. So I started signing her up for volunteering at my daughter’s school. We both were longing for something to fill the void we had in our lives. Continue reading “Testimonies: Shannon, Rosemary, and Emma”

Happy Birthday Victor!

victorThere are some pretty incredible stories of how God is at work in people’s lives that have grown from our short time at House of the Harvest. One of those stories belongs to Victor. Victor started coming to HoH fairly early after we opened. He joined our House of the Harvest family as someone who was in need of our services. A big part of Victor’s story is our outside guy, my brother in law Cary.

Cary has a lot of gifts that sometimes I am not sure he even realizes. One of those gifts is that he loves people and he can start a conversation with just about anyone. Cary is never too good to talk to anybody either. That quality is what created the bond between he and Victor. Through frequent conversations each Saturday, Cary and Victor developed a mutual respect for one another. Shortly afterward they were friends…you would have thought they had known each other since high school.
Continue reading “Happy Birthday Victor!”

God’s Family: Living in Community

communityI stopped by this morning to check the mailbox. We got the water bill. It reads -197.51. How did that happen? I guess I should call and clarify. I hear, “Hello,” on the other end. I reply, “Yes ma’am, I am from House of the Harvest and I just got our bill and it says -197.51?” On the other end, “Yes sir, someone put $200 on the account for y’all.” Continue reading “God’s Family: Living in Community”

Our Greatest Joy

EmmaThis school year, Jennifer and I have spoken to over 2,000 students of Madison County Schools about House of the Harvest. Our hope is to share just a little bit of what is happening through the hearts of God’s people in our community. Every time we speak to a group of kids, have a group come to work with us, or tell the story of how it began, it plants a seed in those hearts. There is no greater blessing than watching those seeds grow.

Over the course of the last few months we have watched seeds grow and grow, and in such a short time. I would say the greatest blessings we have experienced are watching our children being motivated to serve others and to initiate change in our community. Those stories have to have a voice…and they have to spread like wildfire. A child can inspire adults with their soft hearts in ways that no one else can. That is why I felt compelled to share. Continue reading “Our Greatest Joy”

Surprise!

walterjonesWalter Jones came to work Saturday! What a blessing he has been to House of the Harvest! For those that don’t know, Walter used to live in our community. He played several years with the Seattle Seahawks and is highly regarded as one of the best, if not the best, offensive tackle to ever play in the NFL. Walter is a Hall of Famer, and John Madden himself stated that he thought Walter was, “the best player in the NFL” at one point in his career. Continue reading “Surprise!”

Two Mites

two mitesThere is a certain lady who visits House of the Harvest each week. She keeps a very low profile. She doesn’t stay long…sometimes she doesn’t even get out of the car. Just pulls into the parking lot, unknown to the majority of people there, makes a generous food donation, and carries on her way. I don’t know her name, where she is from, or even the reason that House of the Harvest compels her to contribute…but she is there, every Saturday to make her donation.

And by all accounts her donation may not seem much to most people there. It doesn’t need a pallet to be moved like a lot of our food. Nobody needs to come running with a shopping cart or anything to bring it in. It doesn’t require a dolly, or several individuals, or a pallet jack. In fact, some might even look at her donation and think, that will only serve 5 or 6 of our 150 families. Continue reading “Two Mites”

Protected By The Almighty Hand

communityEver since the beginning of time, God has been faithful to protect His people. Remember when Abraham let Lot choose the better land? He knew God would protect him. When Moses stood in front of Pharaoh? God had promised to protect him. Over and over in the Psalms we can read about David and his reliance on God’s protection from his enemies. God was faithful to protect His people over and over again.

But there were times when He wasn’t. Just the other night I read the story of the tower of Babel. The people were seeking to “make a name for themselves.” They were self-promoting, self-serving, and self-reliant. In the end, God didn’t offer His protection. Rather, He caused confusion and dispersed them as He had commanded them.

I feel a great sense of protection over House of the Harvest. Mostly, I think, because I feel God has blessed us with a tremendous responsibility. Wouldn’t I be an unfaithful steward to not guard and protect it with all of my heart? Continue reading “Protected By The Almighty Hand”

Why We “Never Grow Weary”

potatoWe love our Saturday mornings at House of the Harvest. It is such a blessing to have that time to spend with our community. For our “regulars,” we have all become a family. We look forward to being together, sharing each other’s stories, and just catching up. But when it all settles and the chaos ends, we look forward to the rest to. I am grateful for everyone who helps us close up and clean up each week. We close at 11:00 and I am usually on my way home by 11:15. But not today…

We opened the garage door today. It was nice outside. Kim Converse was helping Jennifer with some stuff after we closed up. It was around the time we are usually out the door. About 11:15 a lady and her daughter (a Harvest Elementary student) pulled up in need of food. I walked her around and got them some things. Soon after a couple ladies in another car pulled up. We got them some food. Then another. Sometimes it seems as long as the door is open, people will pull up. Continue reading “Why We “Never Grow Weary””