On September 8, 2014, we held GAP’s annual furniture sale. This event allows our clients to purchase new and used furniture at a great price. Prices range from $1.00 to $30.00 per item or set of furniture. All funds from this event go into a special account that is used to help clients during emergency situations throughout the year. This allows our clients to purchase furniture they need and at the same time help fellow clients. Although we do sale all the furniture to clients there are some clients due to a recent house fire or other extreme cases that are able to receive furniture at no cost to them.
One of the greatest furniture needs our clients have is for mattresses and bedding. I helped a husband and wife shop who had six children. They stated their only need was beds at this time. They wanted two beds: one twin bed for their two boys to share and one full bed for their four girls to share. This family of eight for the last several weeks had been sleeping just on blankets in the floor. They had to get rid of the three mattresses they previously had due to bed bugs. When this family arrived we only had 3 mattress sets left at the sale. The couple was so excited about getting these mattresses for their children. We fit the twin inside their minivan and we tied a queen set to the roof. When I asked if they could come back for the third queen mattress set their response was, “Two is all we need. We don’t want to take from someone else who needs it worst than we do. Me and my wife are fine sleeping on the floor.” When they asked how much they owed, I responded “No charge.” The man’s response was “Thank you, Jesus!”
This event reminded me of GAP’s theme verse for the year, “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven” Matthew 5:16. (NASB) This is what we are called to do at GAP. We allow God’s light to shine through us as we do “good works”. But these “good works” have a purpose. They are to point people to our Father. When this man responded, “Thank you, Jesus!” he was glorifying our Father in Heaven. God had met a real physical need in his life and he recognized it was a work of God not GAP.
Another family who came to the sale had been homeless for several months and had just gotten into a house. The man had lost his leg due to diabetes and was not able to get into his former home. This led the family to be homeless seeking shelter in different area homeless shelters. God has now provided them a house to rent and they received a load of furniture for their new house. It is such a blessing to be a part of God’s work!
I would like to say thank you to our partner Smoke Rise Baptist Church in GA. Throughout the past year, this church had collected two trailers full of furniture for this year’s sale. A group of men delivered the furniture and a couple even stayed and were a huge help in loading the furniture into clients’ vehicles. We also had another mission team who showed such servant hearts as they worked at the furniture sale, South Gate Baptist Church from MO. This team served as personal shoppers for our clients during the sale and also helped load furniture. South Gate Baptist Church did a wonderful job talking with our clients and helping them at this sale.