Back to School Drive

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We are so excited that our neighbors at the Victorian Lake Mobile Home Community called us to ask if we could help them with school supplies because the money that was used to support some of the residents as their children started school was suspended. It’s amazing for us to think just a month ago, we didn’t know our neighbors nor did we know what they needed. By opening our doors on Wednesday at lunch that has changed.

Thanks to Emmanuel’s Table, we have been able to meet our neighbors across the highway. Each week, we have met new people in this community and asked them to spread the word about Emmanuel’s Table. By going to them and inviting them to extend the table that has been set in our church thanks to our partners each Wednesday, we have gotten to know our neighbors and their needs.

We took the first load of school supplies from our school supplies drive across the street yesterday afternoon. We were so glad that we were able to bring some items before school started and will continue our work next week as school starts.

It would have been easy for us to assume that our neighbors needed school supplies and begun this collection earlier, but if we had done that, then we might have interfered with the work the property manager had done for years to help her residents and to develop community among the residents. By waiting and listening, we were able to provide supplies that were normally given in a time of need and partnering with the property manager to continue her work to unite the residents of this community.

It’s easy for us as Jesus’s disciples to jump ahead when we start a new outreach program or to bring our assumptions to the work we have been called to do, but when we do, God’s work begins to be clouded by our need to be affirmed in our own assumptions rather than God’s work reflecting a God who is worthy of praise.

Psalm 133 begins:

How good and pleasant it is when brethren live in unity.

We miss the opportunity to live in unity and in mutual respect with our neighbors when we make assumptions about who they are and what they need. We gain the opportunity to live in unity and see God’s miraculous work when we listen to our neighbors needs, and then respond to those needs as God leads.

Week 2: Sandwich Lady

This week at Emmanuel’s Table sponsored by Travinia’s Italian Kitchen, Panera Bread, and Bilo, we were able to feed 9 people on campus. As we did last week, we delivered the food we had leftover to some of our neighbors in need. We were able to go to the same place and some of the kids we met last week saw us and called out, “It’s the sandwich lady” because last week we had shared sandwiches from Firehouse Subs’ generous donation.

We shared pasta and bread this time and were amazed to see how they were sharing with their neighbors and others who they knew were in need. We were able to feed 10 kids and 3 adults who we saw although we know that the food we gave would provide 25 servings. We are thankful for the relationships we are building with our neighbors thanks to the generosity of our neighbors who have provided food.

This week we’re studying Matthew 14:13-21 and we can’t help but continue to hear Jesus’ command to his disciples:

They need not go far away; you give them something to eat.

A Week of Wonderful Work

Last week, we were busy as a fellowship. We partnered with Belmont Baptist Church in Columbia to teach their preschool class. We had a wonderful time with our 9 students making floaty boats, eating together, and learning about Jesus.

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We also hosted our first Emmanuel’s Table where we were able to feed 20 people at our church and 15 more people as we extended our table to those in need. How good it has been to gather around the table (both adult-sized and preschool-sized) and welcome all kinds of people to experience God’s love.

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Emmanuel’s Table in The State

A Feast at Emmanuel’s Table 

Beginning at noon each Wednesday, the church will be providing meals for area residents or others who might need to escape the heat, use the internet and have a meal.

Several neighboring restaurants and businesses – including FirehouseChick-fil-A and Zoe’s – are joining the effort.

We’re so glad the word is getting out!

 

 

Emmanuel’s Table Preparation

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As we near the first Emmanuel’s Table, we are overwhelmed by the support we have received from our neighbors. We also checked in with the Lexington Interfaith Community Services and found out that they have seen and helped many of our neighbors. We found out that there are many churches who partner with LICS who are trying to support their neighbors by working together.

We are certainly glad to get to know partner churches who are trying to make a difference in Lexington. We know that there is one other church in Lexington who is doing a meal for the community once a month at dinner, which makes Emmanuel Baptist Fellowship the only church LICS knows of who is offering a midday weekly meal.

It’s in the strength of working as a fellowship and with our neighbors that we will be able to help others!