We had a great Man Meeting last night. Men were engaged and energized by being in a community of brothers all striving to reach a place of radical devotion to the Lord. Stephen Cason gave us a great opening challenge, we had great food and then finished with a recap of the Carver ministry. I shared some comments from the book Discover your Destiny and I will put those in the next blog post but for now, we wanted to recap a timeline of the Carver ministry so you can see all of the things that have happened. The more we do for Carver, the more traction we gain. The bolder we are in “stepping off our porch”, the Lord multiplies the number of people coming alongside to help. Everything the Lord has done with Carver has been blessed and multiplied. It is simply amazing and you’ll miss it without reflecting on the timeline….
- Patrick Grant coached many of these young men when they were younger and Patrick “birthed” the idea of Christ Community doing ministry at Carver.
- We offered to host their football banquet last year and fed 300+ people at Christ Community.
- Derrick Shields started doing FCA’s on Friday mornings at Carver last Spring after the banquet.
- Coach McGee came to speak at Brookstone’s FCA and the idea was hatched for Christ Community to feed his team before every football game last fall.
- Derrick keeps FCA going through last summer’s practices – he was there doing ministry and building relationships.
- About 1/2 way through the fall, Coach McGee asked us to offer a devotional after every meal as a way for us to share our lives with the young men and build deeper relationships. Everything started to change once we started those devotionals – the personal connections with the young men began to grow rapidly.
- The principal at Carver stopped by a few times and let us know that he fully supported what we are doing for his team.
- A local foundation heard about the ministry at Carver and gave the School $25,000 to help them equip the new weight room at the new GW Carver High under construction.
- A donor offered to buy a viewing of the movie Courageous so the men of CCC could go together to see the movie. Another donor stepped up and said, “If you can get the Carver team there, I’ll pay for them.” About 50 Carver players and coaches joined us for the movie.
- While we were waiting for the movie, a man from CCC bought Coca-Cola and popcorn for the entire Carver team.
- A connection in Auburn heard about the ministry and arranged for a phone conversation with Ken Bevel (actor from Courageous) which led to Ken coming to Columbus on a Thursday afternoon to share his testimony with the Carver team. His testimony was amazing and the boys were blown away that a “movie star” would come to their school!
- An individual agreed to pray for the entire team by name each week of the season.
- Subway and Marco’s gave us food at their cost.
- Country’s did too and the last Country’s meal was paid for by a donor.
- A donor gave CCC $10,000 at the end of the year designated for the Carver ministry.
- We pulled off our second banquet a few weeks ago feeding 325 people in an amazing night where all the pieces came together.
- We wanted to do something nice for Coach McGee – really nice – to love on him and thank him for his service to Carver. A donor gave him a week at the beach this summer at a beautiful condo over the 4th of July.
- A dentist in our church has offered a free dental exam, cleaning and x-rays to the entire Carver football team over the summer to make sure they are in good shape with their teeth and to see if there are any major problems that need to be addressed.
- A doctor in town is quarterbacking our effort to help Carver with the team’s nutritional needs – what kind of foods to eat, what to avoid and to help us make sure they have the right fruit and liquids during the hot summer practices.
- We are talking to another doctor about possibly being the team sideline physician during the games so if a player gets hurt, a orthopaedic surgeon will be on the sidelines to help.
When I reflect on this timeline, I am amazed. From Patrick Grant’s little mustard seed….just look at what all has transpired. From a bunch of guys saying, “let’s make this a ministry….” just look at what all has been added to that ministry!
Personally for me, you all have blessed me immensely through this ministry. I’m blown away but what I’ve seen you do and to see your hearts for these young men. There is so much more we can do. Dream big! LiveUP. To God be the glory….