Cary Serve 2015

Hello. Thank you for visiting this web page! We will post updates here as we journey to Cary, MS and work together for God’s glory. PS. Thank you to Luverne CRC and all others who are supporting this venture with prayers, finances, food donations, etc. Note: Scroll down for more recent updates.

Update. Thursday evening, June 11. We loaded the trailer and vehicles in light rain. No bus this year. Glad mechanical issues came to light before we began the journey. Substituted a Suburban (pulling a trailer) and a Taurus. We made good time, running through some heavy showers near Omaha. Thanks for prayers. We give thanks for traveling mercies. Pastor Sparks

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Update – Friday Evening, June 12. We give thanks for another safe day on the road. Enjoyed lunch at Lamberts. Food was good as always. Had some vehicle issues though. Taurus AC is giving out. Trying to keep it working. Also the van had a tire go soft. Made two stops: one to patch it and one to replace it. Oh, did I mention that the hotel “lost” our reservation for tonight? Thankfully we are able to stay at a hotel in Blytheville AR, where we’ve stayed in past years. Means we’ll have a bit farther to go tomorrow than originally planned. But guess what! South of St Louis we saw a BEAR run across the Interstate in front of us. Yes, it was a bear! Please keep lifting us up in prayer as we journey onward to Cary tomorrow.

Update – Sunday Morning, June 14. Once again we give thanks for safe travel. On Saturday we got up early and grabbed a quick breakfast at the hotel, before heading down to Cary. We made a stop in Cleveland, MS, to refuel vehicles and to buy additional groceries (milk, jugs of water, breads, etc.). We arrived at the Cary Christian Center about noon, and after unloading the trailer we headed down to Vicksburg to tour the Battlefield Museum (siege of Vicksburg from Civil War). As we were concluding our visit to the museum grounds we were chased away by HEAVY rains. Drove through rain almost all the way back to the CCC. After further unpacking and a light supper, we went into Rolling Fork, MS, to pass out invitations to VBS. It was fun meeting a few children who remembered some of us from having attended VBS in past years! Today we attend church and gear up for our kickoff carnival, slated for 4:30 pm. Thanks again for reading these updates, and especially for your prayers.

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Update – Monday Morning, June 15. On Sunday we attended worship at the Mt. Herald Baptist Church in Rolling Fork, which is where we conduct VBS. The Pastor invited me (Pastor Sparks) to bring the message. I wasn’t planning on it, so I drew on some messages I had recently preached. Pastor Young had to head down to Jackson after the service, because his cousin’s son had been shot in the head the night before and was in the hospital. The women served a meal to honor the men in anticipation of father’s day. They invited us to join them for good food and fellowship. After returning to the Center, we geared up for the VBS kickoff carnival. We were happy that a good number of children attended, and we hope it’s an indication that we’ll be blessed with many participants at VBS! A rainstorm drove us into the building, where we and the children acted out the Christmas story. Please pray that we will be able to reach many children with the Gospel!

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Update – Tuesday Morning, June 16. We had our first full day of work projects and VBS on Monday. After breakfast we went to the Cary Christian Center and had devotions with the staff. After that we changed into work clothes and unloaded a trailer. We then did odd jobs around the center: organizing and cleaning the shop area, working in the garden, etc. We had close to 30 children attend VBS! We give thanks for each of them. Since the classes weren’t of equal size, we may adjust some of them in terms of ages/grades so that no teachers are overwhelmed by too many children! All in all it was a good day, as we have begun anew to “sow the seed” of God’s truth and grace.

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Update – Thursday Morning, June 18. It’s been a busy two days since my last update! Work projects have continued, with some of us building/painting picnic tables and some of us helping to organize things at the Treasure Chest thrift store in Rolling Fork. We’ve cut lumber and assembled 6 picnic tables, which the Cary Christian Center will sell as a revenue source. The group at the thrift store is helping as staff update methods to bar codes, etc. A few of us did some work in a garden — weeding, staking up tomato plants, etc. Attendance at VBS has been growing, with about 40 present on Wednesday. We have had more help from members of the Mt. Herald Church, which has been wonderful — especially since they know many of the children and have a knack for “calming down” some of the more active and inattentive children. All in all, the week has been going well! Thank you for your prayers. Today we wrap up work projects and have final day of VBS, with a closing program this evening. Then we’ll stop for milkshakes and head back to the center to finish packing and cleaning.

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Update – Friday Evening, June 19. Well, another week of ministry in Cary has come to a close. We were blessed with good attendance at VBS on Thursday afternoon, with at least 40 children present! Some of the younger children were extra rambunctious but we had a good day. A color-on-then-iron-on-to-T-shirts craft was a big hit with all ages. On Thursday evening we had our closing program. It was also well attended with about 45 children and some parents there. We have never had such strong attendance at the closing program!! After we closed the chapter on 2015 VBS, we went back to the center to clean, pack, etc. It was rise and shine today as we were on the road by 6:10 am. Yawn! We traveled more than halfway home, stopping in a town south of Kansas City. Tomorrow, DV, we will be home.

Update – Saturday Afternoon, June 20. An uneventful day of travel — which is just how we like it! We give thanks for God’s good providence (Psalm 121) and that we are able to be home again. Now we will think back on lessons learned, and pray that God will make the “seed” we planted grow and bear fruit — not only in the children but in our hearts as well. Once again, we want to thank everyone who supported this effort with prayers and in any other way. To God be the glory!

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