Something has to be Done
May 26, 2019 | by Nancy Newbrough
My husband Ron and I for many years have hosted a LIFE Group in our home. A couple of months ago, The Fellowship announced plans for ServeFest where instead of worshipping on a given Sunday morning, the congregation would go out and serve the community. LIFE Groups were challenged to find a worthwhile project or adopt one already in place. I immediately started praying that God would show our LIFE Group an opportunity to help someone in need.
In a conversation with a friend in my YMCA exercise class, she casually asked if I was aware of a ministry that helps the elderly. Since I had not mentioned ServeFest to her, I knew God was answering my prayer! My friend explained that she helps deliver Meals on Wheels, and one of the recipients on her list is an elderly, disabled man who is confined to a wheelchair. However, there was a major problem in getting to his front door to bring him the meals. The yard of his home in Old Katy had become totally overrun with bamboo. Unbelievably overrun! So overrun that when you drove down his street, you could not even see his house. Getting to his front door was almost impossible, and she had great fear of encountering snakes in the jungle environment. Something had to be done about the bamboo or they could no longer deliver meals to this very dependent man. She had been praying that God would lead her to a solution for the problem.
Bamboo was introduced into the southern United States in 1882 as a fast-growing windbreak by tobacco farmers in Alabama. It is one of the fastest growing plants in the world – certain species can grow 36 inches in 24 hours to say nothing of how rapidly it can spread. No wonder this man’s house was almost invisible!
Not really realizing the enormity of the project, I told my LIFE Group about this man’s need. One of our members owns a horticulture business (God was already putting the pieces together)! He drove by the house and evaluated the yard, then reported back to our LIFE Group how badly the man needed our help – even though the task was overwhelming!
Besides those in our LIFE Group who were able to work, another couple from the church signed up through ServeFest to join us. How happy we were to see them coming!
Though the challenge we were facing was certainly God-sized, our great God can accomplish wonders! When we arrived at the site, everybody just started pitching in. Bamboo is extremely fibrous and very hard on any kind of ordinary power tools for the lawn. Therefore, the bulk of the work had to be done with tree trimming equipment. Some of the bamboo was more than 2 inches in diameter and very difficult to cut. In most places it was extremely dense, and some of it 20-30 feet tall. The backyard also was completely overtaken by the bamboo.
In the process of cutting the bamboo down and hauling it away, we discovered a hole under the eaves of the house. It was large and presented an opportunity for animals to enter the house through the attic area.
Our group accomplished wonders! When the elderly man came to the door to view his now beautiful yard, he had tears in his eyes. I told him about ServeFest and our desire to show God’s love to him. He said he never expected a blessing so wonderful and thanked God for us.
Upon showing my friend the “before” and “after” pictures, she could not believe it! The facade of the house is now clearly visible and accessing the front door no longer presents a problem!
This very senior citizen does not have help and is overwhelmed by the enormity of keeping up a house and yard. There is much more work that needs to be done! Our LIFE Group as well as The Fellowship plan to keep in touch and continue helping this disabled man!
Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue
but with actions and in truth.
1 John 3:18