Monday, December 31, 2012

Feeding of the One Thousand

Photo grabbed from The Jesus Rocker

Our church, TFCN, got a little too ambitious (in a good way) this year!
We organized something that was a big leap for us.
We attempted to feed one thousand kids as a way of giving back to God. He has blessed our church so much, so this is our way of being a blessing to others :)

We went to TFCN at 11am for the preparations.
We had the activity last Saturday, December 29, 2012, at the Church's Parking Lot. :)

 Here's Claudine. She's one of my small group members :) She also made herself available to help out :D
With Danna. Haha she looks like a puppet! We used the curtain in the picture for our Puppet Show :)
We were puppeteers that day! 
Here's the Program. God blessed this and tweaked it a little to make it a little more memorable! :)
Here are some of the kids. The Dads of TFCN took the time and effort to drive for these kids!
The kids were mostly from Taytay. They live in areas such as Arenda, Penestra, Sta. Ana, Tibagan, Rowenas, etc. It was a great time seeing these kids from different places laugh and play together!
(though I think it would be more personal for them if we fed them in their respective areas which could be harder to organize)
The workers were not only the adults in our church. Many of our church's young people also helped out. We wore red :) The strategy our senior pastor thought of was to assign more or less 10 kids to each worker. That indeed made it easier to manage :)
This scene pained me so much :( It was a rather heavy feeling seeing these kids rush out of this delivery truck. It's a delivery truck, mind you! It broke my heart...This group of kids was the most excited and jolly, nonetheless! Oh I thank God for giving these kids extraordinary and carefree joy. :')
These kids is just almost 1% of the kids who went!! Haha!

This picture was indoor because it rained until 3pm. We led the kids up to the sanctuary. It was where we had the Puppet Show and some games. We did not want to have sick kids after this activity! Of course we wanted them to be back to their families a little healthier (physically and, of course, spiritually)

After the Puppet Show, we led the kids back to the parking lot. There we had a short bizarre but really cutie puppet show (Tom and Tam), a few more games, a visit from Jollibee and Hetty (fast food mascots in the Philippines) and a lot more! We taught these kids some dances and songs that I pray would be used by God to put in their hearts the very reason why we did this - Jesus! :)

After everything was set, we distributed the food. This was the most challenging part for everyone!
How are we gonna check every kid's food stub? How are we going to make sure that every kid has food? What could make the distribution faster? Should we maintain one line of kiddos getting food, to make sure that the food stub is double checked before giving out food? Or should we have 6 lines? 
We ended up having the workers getting the food for the number of kids they're handling! Which I think is the best among the different strategies we thought of.
We gave out Jollibee Burger Steak Meals, Zesto fruit juices and apples.

After most of the kids were done eating, we again shared a few songs that has the greatest and truest message among all children songs! :) It's better for them to sing and to dance to these songs rather than to the ones like Gangnam Style. :P I remember seeing kids who looked like they were the kind who did not want to dance and participate who actually enjoyed the dances we taught.

We also gave out candies and a few balloons as the kids were waiting for their rides home (c/o the Dads in TFCN) The kids sometimes did not want the candy itself, some only wanted the bragging rights from catching some candies and calling them yours. Some fought with their lives on the line for candies! It ended up being a not-the-best idea because some kids literally jumped over the others just to be able to catch candies! Tsk :(

The kids were brought back to their homes with smiles in their faces and Jesus in their hearts! ;)
(Shall add more pictures soon! :D)

Before the kids came and the actual feeding, people were worried. Where do we get funds? How do we get donors? Will the food be enough for everyone? Will we really reach our budget goal?
Before we got the assurance that all the kids that had food stubs had enough food, we experienced a lot of stress and panic. Especially when kids poured out, there were many kids who came without the food stub (which means that they were not among the 1000 kids counted). When we assumed that the kids that arrived were more than a thousand, making the food a worry, we had different responses. The stress even translated into bad temper for some, which may not appear as a blessing to some children. Of course they would not see Jesus if they became victims of your stress! Haha!

Imagine being one of the kids. You came there to eat and have fun with other kids. Then an adult will shout at you, "Bilis! Bilis! Nako naman ang gugulo.. Ang dami pang nakapila oh! Wag ka na dyan!" instead of the expected "Here's your food, kid. Merry Christmas! Jesus loves you!" :)

So this could be a lesson for everyone :)
When God calls you to service, expect stress, expect going out of your comfort zone. But do not let these rule over you and affect the way you treat the people you were actually called to serve.

And besides, you can be assured that God is sufficient! No need to be all stressed!
It's interesting how He reminded me of His power. :) We had so many thoughts about the amount of food. We had what-ifs that weren't healthy at all. What if the would weren't enough? The kids who wouldn't be able to eat could have a bad time instead of a Jesus time. :(
The food was more than enough.
It was miraculously fit to feed a little more than one thousand kids! Where did that come frooooom?!
It's just like the 12 baskets left after Jesus fed the five thousand. Haha! 
"They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over." - Matt. 14:20
If you wanna recall that story, read Luke 9:19-17 or Matthew 14:13-21.

When it is Jesus you serve,
expect to get more than what you expected.
(not necessarily material stuff, selfish kiddo)

What is your gift to Jesus this Christmas season? :)

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