One of the things that I do at Believers Fellowship is organize periodic outreach activities in which I get the church involved with a local ministry for a one-time event. In my opinion, there is no need for us to reinvent the wheel when there are so many great ministries doing awesome things around Pierce County. Why should our church start a homeless shelter when the Tacoma Rescue Mission already does that? Isn't it better just to get our church involved in what they are already doing? I think so.
In order to connect people with local ministries, I team up with their leaders to come up with a one-day event that we can do together to expose people to what is going on around them. My hope is that once people get their feet wet, they will be more willing to volunteer in the future.
The latest group that we worked with is Love INC (In the Name of Christ) of Pierce County. Love INC does a ton of cool stuff around the country, but one of the things that the Pierce County chapter does is provide furniture to people who have lost everything in a fire, flood, etc. One of the most common scenarios in which people need furniture is when they are forced to take their kids and leave everything in a domestic violence situation. In such cases, Washington State hooks women and children up with a place to stay, but doesn't give them furniture. Love INC steps in and fills this gap.
Well, the folks at Love INC needed a place to store all of the donated furniture. They had this old barn on site, and we thought that with a little bit of renovation, it might be a good place to store furniture. The only problem was that there was 9260 pounds of junk in it. So, our project was to clear out the junk, pressure wash the inside, put up a new wall, create some mattress racks, and install a garage door. Also, I thought it would be cool to have a used furniture drive at the church so that when we were done building the structure we could fill it with furniture.
We finished this past weekend and the project was a huge success! We filled a 26 foot rental truck with donated stuff and even had to take 2–3 pickup trucks worth of stuff separately. The work we did over the past few weeks is going to impact countless people around Pierce County. The question I asked the congregation for this project was, "When is a couch more than just a couch? When it provides hope for a new life." That's what we did these past few weeks. We worked toward giving people hope.
I am so impressed by the people of my church. They have an amazing heart for social justice and community development, and they are the most giving congregation of which I have ever been a part. I am excited about the things we will do in the future! Enjoy the video.