Joseph's Storehouse exists to show the love of God to the people by reaching out and meeting their needs, specifically in the area of food ministry. Everyone who comes for food is also given the opportunity for one-on-one prayer if they so desire, and most of them do. Most of them also have thankful hearts... for the food and for the personal prayers. Each month we hear many stories of how we've impacted their lives. This month Vivian wrote to us:
"I just want to thank you for all you do. I was so upset about my Dad's cancer and all my emotions while caring for him. I don't know the older man's name that was praying with me, but I want to thank him for his prayers, kind words, advice and hug. His wife was the lady that was calling out the numbers.They are a sweet couple. Thanks [to Joseph's Storehouse] for giving me the supplies that I needed for my Dad. I was able to wash his hair, with the no rinse shampoo, and the pull ups were a blessing. Please remember Daddy in your prayers. He has stage 4 liver cancer and is very weak. I go to church every week, but yesterday, I needed someone to just talk with me, that I could be open with. I needed that, more than the food. Keep up the good work. God bless you all."
We hear so many stories like hers. More than the food, she needed someone to listen, to care, and to agree with her in prayer. That's what we do. We don't promote any specific church, or even a specific denomination. We promote the love of Jesus by showing the people that we care. We give them opporunity to ask for prayer of agreement over whatever area in their lives they wish to pray. We join our faith with theirs to believe God to meet their needs. In Vivian's case, she has a lot on her plate with her dad's cancer, but one of our prayer warriors helped lift that burden up to the Lord. Jesus said for us to come unto Him when we are burdened and heavy laden and that He would give us His rest. So she left not only with much needed food and supplies, but feeling much lighter and less burdened than when she came to receive food. Praise God! That's why we're here.
Your generous gifts help make what we do possible. If you are not already a financial supporter, please consider becoming a monthly contributor. $10, $25, $50 each month makes such a difference in the lives of the less fortunate in the community. If you are already a supporter, we thank you very much for your continued support. We also want to remind everyone that we only have a couple of months before the holidays. November and December are always the months we see the biggest need. Thank you for helping us help them. "Inasmuch as you have done it unto the least of these My brethren, you have done it unto Me."
Look for Joseph's Storehouse Food Ministry while you are visiting the famous Wilson County Fair August 16th-24th. We will be located in the Turner Evins Building. Be sure to stop by and get a freezer pop or some other treat. Grab a brochure to learn more about us. Make a donation to our cause... Feeding the less fortunate in our community.
Today's blog post comes to us courtesy of Apples of Gold Ministries. We appreciate the article and including Joseph's Storehouse Food Ministry in the story.
Just One More.
The other day I came in for lunch just as my husband was getting to the end of a 3-hour WWII war movie he’d been watching. As a general rule, I don’t watch them. Daddy lost his leg in WWII. Enough said. Anyway, he paused to tell me the gist of the story so that I would understand when they showed the interview of the real-life soldier, Desmond Doss, in his old age.
Doss was the first (possibly only?) conscientious objector to ever be awarded the medal of honor. He was a Christian, and carried his Bible instead of a gun, serving as a medic for his country. He gladly served in that role, but refused to take up arms to kill. My husband went on to tell how badly Doss was treated by the other men and his C.O. because he refused to carry a weapon, and because he devoted the sabbath (sundown Friday to sundown Saturday) to prayer and nothing else. They all considered him a coward, and as a result he was constantly hazed and ridiculed. They wanted to ship him out on a Section 8 for mental instability or court martial him, anything to get him away from their unit. Until one day, Doss single-handedly rescued roughly 75 of his fellow men, carrying them one-by-one off the ridge. (His C.O. said it was 100 men. Doss in his humiltity said it was more like 50, so the difference was split in the official record at 75.)
At this point, my husband stopped telling the story, and I watched the interviews (from several years ago) of Doss and his former C.O. and some others who were in their late 80s/early 90s by then. The men who had picked on him and ridiculed him for his faith owed him their lives. And they all refused to go to that final battle of Okinawa without him. Even after orders from central command, the C.O. and all of the men wouldn’t start until this soldier finished praying that morning... and they won the battle.
When they asked Doss how he saved all those men, he said he would pray, “Lord, help me get just one more.” And he took one down to safety, and prayed and took another. My husband said that in the movie, it showed Doss doing the impossible, with raw hands climbing up and down on that rope, but he just kept praying for God to let him get just one more until he got them all. I’ll be honest, it brought tears to my eyes.
In the world’s view, Doss had been considered a coward, and most didn’t want to go to war alongside him. In the end, they didn’t want to go without him. His C.O. said the men themselves didn’t really have a lot of faith in God, but they had a lot of faith in Doss and his belief in his God. They had seen firsthand as he walked the walk and not just talked the talk.
Oftentimes, we look at the world around us and it can be overwhelming to see the monumental problems. Evil abounds. Unfortunately, all too often we stay within our own little comfort zone and don’t dare to venture out to try to help with the bigger problems in the world. We think, what can I do? I’m just one person. That’s a lie from the enemy! The Bible says one of us can put a thousand to flight, and two of us can send the legions fleeing. One person with God can accomplish more than thousands without Him.
I’m sure most have heard the story of the little boy on the beach throwing the starfish back into the ocean. When asked how he thought he could possibly make a difference when there were so many, the boy replied, “it made a difference to this one,” as he threw it into the water. That’s the same attitude of the soldier. Just one more.
I sit on the board of our local food ministry, Joseph’s Storehouse, which feeds 400 or so families each month. When they come to get the food, they are offered to sit in faith services as well as offered one-on-one prayer. Not all want it, which is fine, but most do. Just this week, one came back and said she didn’t want prayer this time—she wanted to praise God. She had been bound with drug and alcohol addiction and many other problems, but God has set her free. Her life is now turned around and she is heading in the right direction. Joseph’s Storehouse made a difference to that one. I know we’ve made a difference in a lot of lives through the years, but like only one of the ten lepers that received healing came back to thank Jesus, we don’t always hear the success stories. However, we keep doing what God’s called us to do knowing we are “feeding the world, one soul at a time.”
We all need to have that mentality. We need to not look at the multitude, but look at the one. Pray for God to help us reach someone. Speak an encouraging word. Offer to pray for someone’s needs. Be kind. Be compassionate. Walk in love and forgiveness with everyone at all times. We may not ever know that someone had been planning on suicide, but for our prayer, or someone planning a school shooting, but changed his/her mind because of our kindness. Someone was hopeless, but we gave them hope. While we may never know the results, nonetheless, like the soldier and the little boy with the starfish, we focus on JUST ONE MORE.
We all start shopping for Christmas this time of year, and many of us already shop through Amazon. If you're not already aware, if you simply put "smile" in front of amazon, you land on Amazon Smile, which allows a portion of all of your purchases to be sent to the charity of your choice. We are an approved charity with them. You can support us simply by choosing us as your chosen charity when you shop at Amazon this holiday season. Login to amazon smile at smile.amazon.com/ch/64-1641617. #AmazonSmile#StartWithaSmile
Once you are set up with Joseph's Storehouse as your chosen charity, as long as your order through smile.amazon.com, a percentage of your purchases all year long will be donated to us to help support the needy in our community. In this way, you can give back without even opening your pocketbook. How great is that?! However, if you are able to open your pocketbook, we do need your ongoing support to help us keep the doors open and the food going out. This time of year is especially needful. Thank you again for your continued support of the work we are doing to help the less fortunate in the community.
A large portion of the people we serve are single parents, or families who have fallen on hard times. For them, school starting back in the fall is both a blessing and a burden. They are grateful the children will be in school receiving two meals each day, but they have the extra stress of school clothes and supplies to buy when they can't even afford food much of the time. Several churches in the area offer school supplies, backpacks and more. We also have resources for free clothing in our area, which is a blessing to those in need. Here at Joseph's Storehouse, we provide food, but sometimes we also have school supplies. Be sure to ask about them if you haven't been able to go to the big church giveaways.
Joyce Wilson has written an article to give parents some tips to make back to school time easier for everyone:
Start the School Year With a Bang
As summer draws to a close and brief hints of fall float through the air, the minds of kids and teenagers all across the land begin to turn toward school. Many may be anxious as they start a new school year. Their schedules are about to become busier and they’re starting a new grade or new school. Here is a bit of advice for how parents can help their kids feel excited instead of anxious for the beginning of a new school year.
Start Off Well
Mornings can often be the roughest part of the day for kids as everyone in the family scrambles to get up, get dressed, eat breakfast and fly out the door. Starting the family’s day in a calmer, more organized manner will get your kids off to school on a positive note. To do so, make sure your kids get enough sleep so they’ll be ready to get up in plenty of time. Prepare as much as possible the night before; gather school supplies, pack lunches and choose clothes. As parents, you should get up well before your kids - if you are rushed and flustered, they will be, too. You should also set up a morning routine for them so they know exactly what to do, including brushing their teeth, making their bed, unloading the dishwasher and eating breakfast.
Schedule It Out
Remember that it will take a few days at least to get back in the swing of the school schedule and adjust to the increased workload compared to summer, so give yourself and your kids some grace. Start adjusting their schedules a week or so before the actual first day of school so getting up earlier is not such a rude awakening. They will also have to get used to homework again, so help them out by setting up a well-lit, comfortable, uncluttered place for them to do their work when they get home. Give them a snack and some downtime before making them jump right into homework every day. Make sure you’re not overcommitted with extra-curricular activities as well. Too many places to go can wreak major havoc on your family’s schedule, and you’ll need some down time to just breathe as you adjust to the reality of a new schedule.
Taking stock of what should be organized as you start back to school will also help. Start by doing a thorough cleaning of each kid’s room and closet. Go through their clothes and donate, sell or hand down anything they have outgrown. Get their homework areas clean as well. Make sure you have extra school supplies at home. Kids always need paper, pencils, crayons and more when they’re deep into homework. Set up a calendar and filing system so everyone is up-to-date on schedules and your kids have a place to put the never-ending pipeline of papers that flow to and from school.
Also think about what new supplies or equipment you might need to buy. For example, if you have a younger child who'll be playing online games or doing online exercises as part of their schoolwork or if you have an older child who listens to music while doing homework, a good set of headphones is a solid back-to-school gear investment. Many options are relatively inexpensive and a decent pair can be found for less than $100.
Following these tips will reduce back-to-school chaos and anxiety in your family. In fact, they may even help your kids start to build some excitement for the new school year. The first day of school will be here before we know it. Have a great year!