11) You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.12) This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. 13) Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else.
We have a wonderful success story that I'd like to share that has gone on for quite a while now - it is of how the Christian Men's fellowship group at FCC Santa Barbara has been so very successful in raising funds over the years to end up each year able to purchase different animals through Heifer International.
This is a group that has grown and ebbed to it's current 3 men who every month meet for lunch and have a meeting, fellowship and contribute to an ongoing fund where they were first inspired by one of our women's groups long ago. They wanted to contribute to help others in the world so found Heifer International to suit what they were looking for because of how it is able to pay forward and affect so many people. They started out purchasing goats and gaggles of geese. One year, when my Dad was in the group, they were able to purchase a full menagerie for a village!
The past three years in a row with only three men they've been able to purchase a water buffalo each year. These are surely dedicated men who enjoy each other's company and fellowship. The funny thing is even though for so many years they meet at the local IHOP and I'm sure the waitresses know what they like to order - All their wives also go to lunch. These women came from the very group that inspired the men to take on this project and yet they give the men their meeting space and have lunch together (just the women) at a separate table enjoying friendship and fellowship as well over the years!
FCC Santa Barbara is blessed to have these ladies and gentlemen who not only enjoy each other's company but are able to encourage each other to give and reach out to the world and to pay God's love forward through a great organization. Heifer International is a wonderful way to give throughout the year and especially at Christmas time. One of the most wonderful presents I received once at church was a gift to Heifer in my honor. I’ve given these in the past as well which Heifer’s organization makes it easy – check them online at http://www.heifer.org/ or on their Pinterest page (lots of photos) at http://www.pinterest.com/heiferint/ If you have any questions on how to do this ask me, I’ll be happy to share it with you.
Peace, Lynda Bell