“A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.”   – Prov. 11:25

This “handfuls of purpose” was the King James Version description of gleaning that Ruth utilized in a hopeless and dire economic time (Ruth 2:15–16). The GRC Food Pantry uses the same principles. It’s about being grateful for God’s grace and provision in our lives and then providing for others, especially during these trying times. 

We just celebrated another July 4th but freedom had quite a different ring to it this year. Here, as a church, is where the question needs to be asked how – in this new normal – are we to be directed to fight the good fight of faith and truly be guided by God’s grace in His new normal? One answer is found in Galatians 5:13: “For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.”

During this stormy time it’s an opportunity for us to know that now – even apart – we’re all in this together as the body of Christ to be utilized in God’s Hands in service and love. The GRC community has consistently been very gracious in this capacity! We’ve been tested in many ways and continue to help in amazing ways. But the Lord is calling for us to go deeper still.

Our directive comes out of Matt. 25:34-36. God’s Word rings clearly as we hear those words echoing through our soul: “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”  It’s a powerful verse used as the Diaconate’s call to fulfill GRC’s duty in helping the under-served. Even though, we felt there was enough food on supermarket shelves in May, we started an effort to collect food for those who are having difficulties making ends meet. To date there have been over 50 kits distributed to GRC and non-GRC families. But now, we want to come alongside the under-served and help as never before. 

The motivating mission and vision of the GRC Food Pantry is to provide the first step in care just as the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25-37. This parable challenges most, but it now gives us an opportunity to turn from our past and move forward in action by truly loving our neighbors. 

What can you do to help?
In this new normal we are to be intentionally helping out others as never before. The GRC Food Pantry has great potential to help out many. The instructions are quite simple and can be found here

It provides immediate help by soliciting, collecting, and packaging food for individuals or subsidizes with food to programs like Star of Hope Ministries. This is an opportunity to understand the first steps of the gleaning principles found in the Old Testament where all are to provide opportunities for those in need. Similar to Old Testament farmers, who left food in the field, consider setting aside a portion of your groceries or buy extra dry goods the next time you’re at the market.  This is how we drop “handfuls of purpose” for the underserved.

On behalf of the Diaconate, we thank the Lord for His provision, for your prayers and sacrificial efforts! Please help GRC continue to fight the good fight and take this shopping list with you so that we might be able to provide mercy and realize that our blessings have been gleaned through God’s goodness and grace, from His abundant fields so that we would share it with others so that ultimately the name of the Lord would be glorified through these “handfuls of purpose”.

And Beyond … 
Want to actually see how God has been utilizing His church at GRC since COVID-19 began? Check out this SOHM video. With only small initial efforts at GRC, here are some ways to see the just how God has multiplied our efforts and Provided for so many. Praise be to God!

Werner Tretner serves on the Diaconate and is the Director of Celebrate Recovery, a Christ-centered recovery program.

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