Knoxville is experiencing some unusually hot and humid days this week. Feels like home to us but definitely makes for some exhausting days working out in the heat. Our youth and adult are troopers. We've received several compliments this week from leaders of organizations, home owners, the hotel manager and our bus driver, Steve. He told the youth that they are the most well-behaved and polite group he has ever worked with. The hotel manager said this was the best group of young people they've ever had at their hotel. Our young people have been complimented on their attitudes, their kindness, their musical gifts, and their commitment to working hard. I know you are proud of them as I am. And while a pat on the back is awesome and well-deserved, I believe, we continue to direct our gratitude to God. We don't want our heads to get so big that we can't fit through the door we just framed. :)
We remind the youth and ourselves to give God glory every opportunity we can and to remember it is the fruit of the Spirit at work in us that is most appealing to others. If they experience love, we can honestly say that we love because Christ first loved us. (I John 4:19). If we are compassionate, it is because our Heavenly Father is compassionate with us. (Luke 6:36). If we chose to forgive someone who has wronged us or hurt our feelings, it is because we remember God forgives us. (Ephesians 4:32)
In all things, may God be praised for we would be lost without Him.
Our youth worked tirelessly today - repacking food at Second Harvest; playing with refugee children from Iraq; finishing a ramp for Ms. Betty and her husband; building another ramp and painting ramps, porches and shutters for another family; and visiting with and praying for those staying at the Knoxville Rescue Mission. The group at KARM was invited to eat lunch with the guests. And although some guests got up and left when one of our youth sat down to eat with them, our youth were not discouraged. They went to someone else until they found someone who was eager to fellowship over some chicken chili. :)
Tonight they sang at Echo Ridge Retirement Center. It will be a late night with supper at 7:45pm followed by small groups were we debrief the day. Pray for our Friday as we wrapped up our projects. Pray that we can complete the work we've been tasked with. Pray for wonderful conversations with individuals God brings our way. Pray for open hearts and eyes to see God at work and simply to see God - our loving Creator who wishes to bless each of us throughout the day with His presence and His love.