Monday, August 18, 2014

Backpacks as a Bridge
August 18, 2014

This past summer, our Encounter Middle School ministry capped off all of its fun events with an all-day road trip. One part of that road trip (a.k.a. The Encounter Brevard County Road Trip Blow-Out Extravaganza Fest!) took us to a small after-school program on Lipscomb Ave called "Master's Workshop" (MWS).

MWS is a safe haven for the kids of the underprivileged area that surround University Blvd. in Melbourne.  Miss Janet has been there since 1998 slowly building and expanding her evangelistic ministry to the children of this area.

While we were there she had us sort some books, clean some floors, pick some weeds, and finally have a nice long talk with her about her passion and vision for the ministry that she is partaking in. Several of the middle school students mentioned, after the fact, that among all the activities (which included The Lego Movie, lunch, the beach, Andretti's, and games), the MWS visit was by far their favorite! What a blessing.

While we were there it came to our attention that they were having a back-to-school party and were approximately 100 backpacks short. Another church had committed to collecting and sending the backpacks, but at the last minute, they had withdrawn their commitment.

The following Sunday, Jason, Elise, and I decided that we would take the Edge youth group to Target and purchase 25 backpacks and enough supplies to fill them.  What a spectacle we were, walking up to the cash registers with three heaping carts of school supplies. One gentleman even asked me, "Are all these your kids??" I thankfully could reply, "No, they are helping an after-school ministry." After we purchased and packed all 25 of the packs, we let MWS know that we could deliver them. Patrice, Miss Janet's right-hand gal, came to the church to pick them up. Just that morning, she told me, that they were 20 packs short and they had no idea where they would be coming from. So, they prayed. As she was getting into her car, tears were in her eyes as she said, "God is SO GOOD!"

Amen to that, God is so good and it is a great learning opportunity to see how God connects his church through prayer and taking action. God used something as simple as buying backpacks to make a bridge for the gospel message! Awesome!

If you would like more information on Master's Workshop, please email me directly at This is a small and needy ministry and we have so much potential as a congregation to make a great impact for the Gospel through this local ministry.