I’ve got at least one more thing to say about yesterday’s topic, Knowledge Puffs Up. Seriously, it’s beyond me how men and women can argue and debate and complain about each other and about the Church in the name of Christ. In light of Holy Scripture and salvation from God in Jesus, I don’t get it. And, quite frankly, it’s easy for me to understand why people are leaving the Church. And I completely understand why outsiders don’t want any part of it. But let’s save that for Monday. Today, I want to write about something I’m really excited about.
Not this open letter from Sports Illustrated football expert Peter King to Jerry Wayne. This letter is excellent, yes. And I have enjoyed reading it. But it’s not today’s main topic.
For 27 years now, Give Away Day has been the highlight of Legacy’s outreach and benevolence ministry. We do many other things in the areas of outreach and benevolence. But Give Away Day has always been our signature event. Our mission identity is wrapped up in Give Away Day. It’s almost become who we are.
And that’s a good thing. It’s a very good thing. It is certainly something to be proud of. I tell people all the time about our Give Away Day. I think it’s tremendous. Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of people lined up for hours around our building. We love these people. We pray with these people. We fall in love with these people. And we help tons of people. Over the years, we’ve helped untold thousands of people with food and clothes and household items and mercy and love and compassion and grace. It’s wonderful for the people who are helped. It’s an incredible blessing for Legacy. And our God is glorified.
The problem is that we only see these people once a year.
The people who come to Give Away Day don’t live here. They’re not a part of our immediate community. They all drive 30-45 minutes to get here. I invite these people to worship with us knowing that it’s all but impossible. I ask for their phone numbers, only to learn on Monday that it’s a wrong number or it’s been disconnected.
That’s always been the frustrating part of Give Away Day. We’ve never been able to achieve our ultimate goals of bringing these people into our community of saving faith.
Hundreds and hundreds of the people who need Give Away Day and who need to come to God in Christ live in the Rosemont neighborhoods of South Fort Worth. That’s where they are. By God’s grace, our brother Manuel Calderon and the Siempre Familia Church of Christ are right there in the heart of that mostly Spanish-speaking segment of our county. Those 240 brothers and sisters live on the same streets as these people who drive 25-miles to get to Legacy’s Give Away Day. They work with them. Their kids all go to school together. They play ball together. They attend the same civic events. They are already a community with these people.
So tomorrow, we’re taking Give Away Day to the people. Instead of asking people to drive to us, we’re taking the clothes and diapers and coats to them. We are partnering with our God and with Siempre Familia to make Give Away Day bigger and better and more Kingdom effective than it’s ever been before!
There will be 100% follow-up with every single person we serve tomorrow. There will be Bible studies and prayers and ministry. Meaningful conversations. In-depth interactions. No language barriers. No long drives to a place that doesn’t seem like home. There will be baptisms. Souls will be saved and hell will be robbed!
My prayer is that we at Legacy can experience what it’s like to reach out into a local community with the love and grace of Jesus. My hope is that we feel deep inside us the joy of getting involved with people who live in our own zip codes. We’re doing that already in bits and pieces with a couple of the elementary schools around Legacy. But Siempre Familia does it on a grand scale, on a Kingdom-worthy, gargantuan scale! And I want us to catch that same Gospel fire.
We are thrilled to be partnering with our church family at Siempre Familia and joining God in the great work he’s already doing there in South Fort Worth. We are grateful to be counted worthy as our God’s co-workers in this salvation mission. And we humbly pray for his continued blessings as the powerful heritage of Legacy’s Give Away Day tradition enters this exciting new phase!
“May he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.” ~Hebrews 13:21