For the past month I have not been at church. One week we were out of town, then Emma’s sick followed by Izzie and even this past Sunday I had the whole throat virus thing. So it has been a little jaunt of skipped Sundays for me. The sad thing is that I don’t think anyone has even noticed I’ve been absent. All that to say, I have gotton on line this past month and kind of had church sitting in front of my computer. A church called NewSpring which is a church that is growing my leaps and bounds in Anderson has had their Sunday services available on podcast and video. I’ve really enjoyed the current series they are in and am learning a lot about why in the middle of no where – literally, a church is thriving and running about 8000-11000 people each Sunday. The pastor there is a guy named Perry Noble and he is an excellent communicator but the thing I am enjoying most about him is that he is an activator who has passion and vision and has a real heart for his community. For instance he was reading the paper last week and there was an article about how some of the food pantry’s in Anderson County were running bare. So in one week Perry mentioned it to the church and told them to come next week with food and that they were going to have trucks waiting. And this is what happened……

We completely filled up 4 organization’s food pantry’s…Salvation Army, Soup Kitchen, Haven of Rest, and Anderson Interfaith Ministries.

We filled a storage room at the Salvation Army waist high with food.

When we got to the Soup Kitchen, their pantry was completely bare, and when we left an hour later, it was overflowing.

We unloaded 1 – 7’x 24’ moving truck and 3 – 6’x12’ trailers and Paul Marshall’s pick up truck that were all completely full of food.

It took 11 guys 5 hours to unload everything.

2 trailers were so full that we could not move them last night and the base of the trailer jack of one of them was buried in the asphalt (b/c of the weight of the food in the trailer.).

It is amazing the difference a church can make in a community when people will work together and give generously toward a common vision and purpose.

Why can’t more churches be doing these kinds of things? Isn’t that what the church is for? Anyway I am so glad that I happened upon their website. I’ve really enjoyed listening in this month and in some ways feel like I have been on the journey with them. Again, all from my own computer. So as much as I hated missing my own church I have really enjoyed the vision at NewSpring.