Author of Today’s Post is Kristin
What a glorious day God has given us in Columbus. We started our day off bright and early at the Fresh Market, a location directly across the street from the Church of All People. It is a widely known fact by all congregants and neighbors, that this very location was a drive-thru beer store just a few short years ago. In fact, on one of the first Mission Trips Church of the Resurrection came to Columbus, the beer store was transformed into the beautiful site it is today. The benefit of having refrigeration and garage door size openings, allowed this dream, to become a reality, with the perfect blend of assets for delivery and keeping the food properly cooled. Volunteers and staff alike, are proud to report that they just reached a new goal this past week, serving just over 500 patrons in one day. An abundant blessing, where patrons are able to acquire free produce on a daily basis. We unloaded melons, pineapple, cucumbers, carrots, green beans, lettuce, milk, meats, grapes, blueberries, blackberries and the list goes on and on. What was a shop of empty shelves was filled aplenty within a short 1.5 hours. The store gives away 30,000 lbs of produce a week, 2 million lbs a year, what a feat and graceful gift of God.
With the remaining hours of the morning, we headed over to the Free Store, which is the roots of this very organization. It was in existence before The Church of All People ever began, and is a very popular donation location, as the donators love the fact that patrons do not have to purchase their items. This again, is a graceful gift of God, and it is quite evident that the store employees and volunteers see it as such. The focus is to be on the connection with those in need, and to be “radically hospitable” to those who reap the services. This group has certainly taken this mission to heart, and show the most loving, welcoming and engaging relationship with those who enter it’s doors.
Lunch was spent at the Baptist Church next door, who takes the weekdays to feed those who are in need of those who are homeless or experiencing poverty, and in need of assistance for lunches. During this opportunity, we had the pleasure to sit among the patrons, and enjoy developing relationships, hearing their stories and learning more about the area. The meal was delicious, the efficiency this church shows by feeding people Mon-Fri annually, is nothing short of a miracle. It takes a village, and there are 50 churches who participate in helping this to be a success, both with food and volunteers.
Perhaps the most productive and amazing experience we had was going over to Mary’s house, where we had a game plan to work on landscaping in the front and back of her home, scraping and then painting her front porch. In addition, a few of the guys completely reworking her drainage pipes, to address a water issue in the basement. This was all a success, with the landscaping in the front complete with new bushes, plants, dirt build up, mulch and Preen. The transformation was amazing, and the smile and gratitude on Mary’s face showed us how being God’s hands and feet today, was worth every minute we spent working away to beautify and improve her space.
We are looking forward to another day on our journey tomorrow, waiting for God’s nudge, to allow us, and all that we are serving, to receive the biggest blessings.