There is a bit of chill in the air these days. I will know it is truly fall when I begin to smell pinon smoke from neighboring fireplaces. However, for many it is not just about the smell of the burning pinon but the heat that it produces. For some, this heat is a matter of life or death on the frigid nights in the East Mountains. Unfortunately, many in our community struggle with keeping the firewood bin filled during the long winter.
MCC has a long history of helping locals meet their firewood needs. What a unique opportunity for us to be able to show God’s love through the warmth of a fire on a cold night. But to really show God’s love, we need to be more than a supplier of firewood. Such calls for help are often a sign of a much deeper problem--broken relationships with friends and family and most importantly with God. The request for firewood to the church is a symptom of a lack of anywhere else to turn.
We apply a “When Helping Hurts” model to not just deal with the symptom but also work to deal with the root cause. This process begins by developing relationships. Nurturing and maintaining a relationship gives the opportunity to really understand the need while also providing the chance for the one in need to contribute to others as well as help themselves. Helping people help themselves creates a newfound sense of ability, self-worth and dignity. In the same way, this gives us the opportunity to help them see that worth and dignity were always there in the eyes of the Lord.
This process depends on relationship building with the client sponsor being the lynchpin. The sponsor is the one who establishes a relationship with the client and walks them through the process of getting wood. In this process they help the client reclaim dignity, restore relationships with others and points them to God. Specifically, the sponsor will assist them in building a full team of workers to cut, spit and deliver wood. The team would normally include the client and his friends, family and neighbors. It is the client’s job to build the team; it is the sponsor’s job to help and encourage them in their relationship building.
The clients who have agreed to this process are ready for a change. What an opportunity as a sponsor to enable the client to take constructive steps toward a better way of life. More importantly to walk along side our Lord and Savior as He works to bring real transformation. And in the process, make a new friend.
We are in need of sponsors. Please consider investing in our community in this valuable way. Come learn more about becoming a sponsor at the Wood Ministry Sponsorship Training on Saturday, October 20th from 9:00am-11:30pm at MCC. Contact Don and Ann Moore to RSVP for the training or to learn more.