MSC News Archives

18

Monthly Motivation

One of the HCC guests named Lori was shopping online for a new pair of Naturalizer shoes. Lori is now in her 60’s and needed shoes that provided her with extra cushion for her hurting feet. Daily she’d scan the internet trying to find any clearance or sales on these pricey shoes that can run $80 to over $100. Due to Lori’s tight budget, she had given up on finding a great deal on a new pair of black Naturalizer gym shoes. A few days later Lori visited the HCC for her monthly shopping trip. As she shopped for her grocery and clothing items, she had forgotten about the ‘really nice’ shoes that she couldn’t afford. After finishing shopping Lori was ready to say goodbye and be helped to her car. However, out of the corner of her eye as she was picking up her belongings, she spotted one pair of women’s black gym shoes. She thought she might as well go check them out and as she did she realized they were the same exact Naturalizer pair of shoes she had been hunting for. That day Lori received her pricey, almost brand-new Naturalizer shoes FREE of charge!

7

Harvest Compassion Center WINS Impact AZ Grant!

Last month Impact AZ held a banquet for the 19 nonprofits who were invited to take part in the 2017 Tax Credit Campaign program. Harvest Compassion Center was blessed to be invited to take part in this program. Impact AZ’s mission is to come alongside local nonprofits helping each strengthen their Tax Credit Campaigns, raising thousands in much needed funding. Impact 2017 was an enormous success with over 2.6 million dollars being raised among the 19 nonprofits! Grants were awarded to those nonprofits who showed the most growth and Harvest Compassion Center was awarded top honors, receiving a $15,000 grant! HCC would like to thank Mission Increase Foundation who runs Impact AZ, Keenly Interactive, and all donors who gave their Charitable Tax Credit to MSC/HCC this past year. Each of those gifts has now been multiplied creating greater impact in the Valley!

17

HCC Volunteer Spotlight: Sullivan Family

Every month the HCC highlights a special volunteer. This month Lauren Sullivan and her 5-year-old son Graham, who is a Serving SPROUT, tell us why they choose to volunteer monthly at HCC Phoenix.

Lauren started volunteering at the HCC Phoenix in 2016 after her good friend and mentor Susan invited her to come along and serve with her one Wednesday morning. Lauren was hooked from the first time serving and has enjoyed getting her family involved with the HCC over the last two years. Lauren and her son have volunteered during weekday shifts helping HCC guests shop for food and clothing and has volunteered on Thursdays helping sort and wash donations. To engage her son their family became a member of HCC’s Serving SPROUTS program where her son earns money each month to feed kids in their community. Lauren and her kids also help with the HCC’s food rescue pick ups from local restaurants like Fleming’s Steakhouse.

When the HCC asked Lauren, what is your favorite part of serving at the HCC Phoenix, her reply was, “The people! Interacting with the clients, especially the children, is so heartwarming. I always leave feeling inspired by the work HCC is doing and I am so appreciative of everyone who works and volunteers with this amazing organization.”

The HCC also asked Lauren how would you encourage others to get involved with their local community? Lauren replied, “If you have a heart for serving but don’t know where to start, ask yourself what you’re passionate about. If it’s feeding and clothing those in need, HCC is your place! If it’s animals, reach out to your local Humane Society. If it’s literacy, contact your library. The possibilities to give back our time are endless. Find something that your heart beats for and seek opportunities in that area.”

The HCC believes in teaching the younger generation the importance of service. Lauren has seen this important seed planted in her children’s lives. “The biggest change I love seeing is how excited my kids are to serve others. My oldest is always asking if it is Wednesday, our day to pick up food from a local restaurant and drop off at HCC. I pray each morning that God would place service on the hearts of my kids and that He would continue to put people and organizations in my life that I can serve with purpose.”

Interested in Volunteering at our Phoenix or Maryvale location? Please contact Adrie Olson at aolson@msfcares.org.

7

MSC’s Torch Award Winners Announced!

Every year MSC, Inc. has the distinguished privilege to grant two high school scholarships to students attending Harvest Christian Academy in Elgin, Illinois. Every year the process is grueling as difficult decisions are made and two winners are chosen. This year was no different. All of us at MSC would like to congratulate junior Hope Mylin and junior Jack Nohava for receiving this year’s top honors as the 2018 Torch Award recipients. Hope and Jack were required to apply for the Torch Award by completing an extensive written application, followed by letters of recommendation, a review of transcripts and in-person interviews.

This year was particularly hard, due to the top quality of students who applied. We’d like to thank all finalists who applied and encourage each of you to never give up and apply again next year! Congratulations again to Hope and Jack for earning this year’s top honors, MSC is excited to see your leadership exemplified in the coming school year!

6

SPROUTS Give Back: Foster Care Night

Once a quarter our Serving SPROUTS (Small People Reaching Out Unselfishly To Serve) Kids’ Program partners with local nonprofits to give back towards their cause. Last month our Serving SPROUTS were invited to partner with Arms of Love Foster Care at their “Date Night Out” event. Foster parents were invited to enjoy a date night out, dropping off their bio and foster kids with volunteers who had a fun-filled night planned for the kids. Our Serving SPROUTS oversaw hosting all the craft tables. The SPROUTS hosted a Mother’s Day table, helping kids plant a flower for mom, a make-your-own-slime table (which was a HUGE HIT!), a thank you card station where the kids made cards for first responders, and face painting. The SPROUTS were able to bless the foster and bio kids with a full night while moms and dads were able to recharge! Thank you to all the SPROUTS who came out, their parents for being intentional on teaching their kids how to serve others and to Laura Thurbon for her amazing face painting skills and generosity! Click on the Photo Gallery link below to view the night’s activities.

To find our more information on how your family can become a Serving S.P.R.O.U.T please click here!

7

HCC Maryvale: Grand Opening Ceremony

On Tuesday, May 22 HCC Maryvale hosted their Grand Opening. Over 150 people dropped in to tour the new center and see how HCC Maryvale is impacting their local community. The Glendale Chamber of Commerce also hosted a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony and Pastor Seth Kleeberger prayed and dedicated the building. We are extremely thankful for the amazing show of love and support from the community. Special thanks go out to: Glendale Chamber of Commerce, Barb with Rita’s Ice who provided cool treats for all our guests, Dolly with Dolly’s Steamboat who provided a free excursion in our raffle, Lavedge Marketing, Bower and Burtt families who also provide dessert treats for our guests, and all of our amazing HCC volunteers who gave numerous tours to all of our guests.

Take a look at the awesome afternoon with link below…

6

For Better or Worse

Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved (Psalm 55:22, ESV).

As much as we may wish for a day in this lifetime when everything negative finally clears and miraculously remains that way for all eternity, that day is not coming. As long as we are on this earth, we will each experience times of challenge as well as cheerfulness; seasons of adversity along with seasons of joy. So if we expect to wisely and faithfully manage the burdens that God chooses to appoint us, we need to prepare for navigating the hard times in the best possible way.

Because believe it or not, if we’re not careful, we could even succeed at making bad days worse.

We do it through . . .

Worry. Prayerlessness and anxiety steal the peace of God that would blow your mind if you’d let it. His peace “surpasses all understanding,” and is able to “guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7). Nothing is gained by pacing back and forth, sitting up all night, fretting your way through all the possible outcomes. “Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature” (Matthew 6:27, NKJV)? Worrying only makes things worse. As does . . .

Striving. Doers can work up as much needless trouble as worriers. The drive to fix things, force interactions, or consider yourself the only one who’s able to handle what’s wrong, is sure to put you out ahead of God’s timing in handling the matter His way. “The wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God” (James 1:20, NKJV). It only introduces more problems.

Gossip. Talking things out can be good, between those who are involved in the issue, but the answers you need for your situation are vertical solutions, not horizontal ones. In widening the field of participants and telling everyone what’s been done to you and by whom, you’re seeking your own support and affirmation, not God’s will and wisdom. And what’s worse, you’re sinning in the process.

Bitterness. When you don’t draw on the grace of God by continuing to love, serve, forgive, and stay united, the only avenue left to you is one that leads toward becoming hard, dry, cold, and bitter. The Bible says to “see to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled” (Hebrews 12:15, ESV).

Despair. This is the worst—giving up, pulling back in isolation, not even choosing to care anymore. At all costs, guard yourself against the negative focus of despondency. An answer to your problem exists, but it’s not waiting for you at the dead-end of despair.

If you’re carrying a heavy burden today, but can’t quickly call to mind the last time you knelt alone behind closed doors and took it to God in prayer, you are fighting what He is wanting to do in you rather than finding Him sufficient for your need. The burdens in your life do not need to be diluted as much as they need to be offloaded in prayer to the One who loves you. Prayer is always the good, better, and best response to any bad situation.

Journal

  • Does one of these five alternatives describe how you’re handling your current burdens? How can you tell?
  • What would help you stay more devoted to prayer? How could you implement this practice?

Pray

Heavenly Father, I believe You appoint every part of my life, even those that are harder than others. Today I ask that You accomplish whatever You desire for these ordeals I’m enduring as I cooperate with You in prayer. Guard me from worry, from striving, from seeking my help in others before You, from turning away from You in bitterness, or from despairing of Your goodness. Keep me steadfast here where Your work is done, in ever deeper places of prayer, in Jesus’ name, amen.

— James MacDonald

For more from James MacDonald and the “Walk in the Word” Bible teaching ministry, visit WalkInTheWord.com.

 

17

HCC Volunteer Spotlight: Becky Pemberton

This month the Harvest Compassion Center Phoenix would like to say thank you to long-time volunteer Becky Pemberton who’s been faithfully volunteering weekly for the past two years! The HCC has many areas in which a volunteer can serve, and one selfless job is ironing all the wrinkled clothing that comes out of the dryers before hanging in the HCC boutique. Due to Becky’s health she works best being able to sit while volunteering. The HCC takes immense pride in presenting clean, ironed clothing to our guests. The HCC asked Becky if she’d be willing to sit each week and iron, allowing our guests to truly feel special that the HCC took the time to make sure they looked like a million bucks in their new clothes. The HCC was thrilled when Becky replied, “Sure, I’ll give it a try!” Becky was hooked after ironing that first shirt, she now owns her ironing station and does an amazing job helping our HCC guests feel the dignity we want them to feel when shopping at the HCC.

One reason why Becky fell in love with volunteering at the HCC is because of the other volunteers she gets to work with stating, “I love them! We’re like a family!”

Becky encourages anyone looking to get involved with their local community to come out and give the HCC a try, “It’s a safe place and serving others always brings you closer to God. The HCC makes me feel useful. I have no more kids at home, so I now feel like I’m a part of something and I know I’m making a difference! When people are in a tough spot, feeling depressed, it’s time to take focus off yourself and feel useful.”

When Becky isn’t volunteering weekly at the HCC she loves spending time with her grandson Ayden, being with friends, watching TV with her husband, hanging out with her dogs and traveling. Once again, we’d like to thank Becky for her willingness to serve others and for the sunshine she brings weekly to the HCC.

Interested in Volunteering at our Phoenix or Maryvale location? Please contact Adrie Olson at aolson@msfcares.org.

6

E-Devotional: Relentless Goodness

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever (Psalm 23:6, ESV). 

If you’re a follower of Jesus-if by faith you have turned from your sins and received His forgiveness-I have news for you.

God is after you.

He’s still pursuing you. Wanting more of you. Hungry to make sure you’re experiencing every blessing that His Son died and rose again to give you, for His glory.

It doesn’t matter how defeated or discouraged you are today. He’s still after you. All that matters is that you are His. “My sheep hear my voice,” Jesus said, “and I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:27). Is that you? Following Him? Not perfectly, of course, but following? Sometimes stumbling, but still getting up? And following? And trying again? And wanting to follow Him even better, even more?

Then God Himself is also following you. He’s on your trail. He’s after you. Promising you that your best days are still ahead of you, no matter where you’ve been or what you’ve done. Your greatest days of usefulness and service to God are still in the future, because “goodness” (defined as bounty and blessing) and “mercy” (lovingkindness and favor) will be on your heels and hunting you down every second of the time.    Can’t be true, you say . . .

Too many failures. “I’ve failed God too many times. No way am I on His first team anymore. I’ve blown it. I have areas in my life where I’ve never gotten victory. Even today I failed again. I’m on the shelf from here on out, and I know it.”4

Too many years. “It’s too late for me. Too much water under the bridge. It’s fine for those who came to Christ as kids or in college or whatever. But I showed up late to the party. The best I can do is just sneak into a back corner of heaven.”

Too many others. “I don’t have any big-time gifts. I don’t have any great abilities. Other people have training and know what they’re doing. Not me. I’m just not that important. It might even be wrong for me to get in their way.”

Too many obstacles. “I’ve got so many things going on in my life right now-work, family, health stuff, all of it-I don’t really have time. And I don’t see it changing anytime soon.”

Believe me, I’ve heard all these lies and dodges before. They’re as old as time, because the enemy will do anything to convince you that God has lost the scent and given up on you.

But just you try staying hidden behind these shadowy half-truths. Just you try imagining you’re out of sight, out of mind. Just you try giving in to the unreality that your home and heart are off His grid, out of His hunting zone.

Because, listen. Can you hear it? It’s the panting of the hound of heaven, running full-speed, headed your way, chasing you down. Following you “all the days” of your life-not to rip into you, but to restore you and refresh you, to overwhelm all of life’s badness with His “goodness.”

Journal
• Which of these fears and excuses have sometimes convinced you that God’s “goodness and mercy” are not coming for you anymore? 
• How different would your life be, even today, if you wholeheartedly embraced this truth?

Pray
Pray 
Lord God, I believe Your Word, even when I doubt myself. I believe what You have done to claim me as Your own, even when I too often resist You and choose my own way. Thank You for loving me enough to want me experiencing the full blessing of relationship with You. And thank You for relentlessly pursuing me until I’m actively living in it. In Jesus’ name, amen.

— James MacDonald

For more from James MacDonald and the “Walk in the Word” Bible teaching ministry, visit WalkInTheWord.com.

 

6

AZ Gives Day and IMPACT AZ Tax Credit Programs Both a HUGE Success!

Our board would like to report that MSC, Inc./HCC’s first time taking part in both IMPACT AZ and AZ Gives Day have been two successful fundraising campaigns helping us fully fund Harvest Compassion Center Phoenix/Maryvale!

IMPACT AZ is a grant initiative program of Mission Increase AZ that HCC was invited to take part of. The program is designed to help tax credit eligible non-profit organizations become healthier, stronger and financially sustainable by maximizing the use of the AZ State Tax Credit. IMPACT AZ gave HCC leaders training, coaching and access to experts in the non-profit industry to help create HCC’s first ever Tax Credit campaign. HCC is one of 20 non-profits in the state of Arizona selected for this program and has a chance to win one of six grants totaling $100,000. HCC is thrilled to announce that this year’s Tax Credit campaign raised over $67,000 from over 200 donors! IMPACT AZ is holding a grant ceremony on May 17th where the HCC will learn if they have won one of the grants available. Overall, the HCC is excited about this year’s outcomes and are ready to kick-start next year’s campaign! Thank you to IMPACT AZ for their support and willingness to direct this campaign! For more information on IMPACT AZ please visit their website at www.impactaz.org.

Campaign #2 AZ Gives Day! This past April 3rd, 2018, 905 non-profits in the state of Arizona participated in AZ Gives Day and raised a total of $3.2 million dollars, making this the largest amount raised in the six years of AZ Gives Day’s existence! The Arizona Give program is run by the Alliance of AZ Non-profits and Arizona Grantmakers Forum. The event was started in 2013 to connect people with causes they believe in and build a lasting, stronger spirit of philanthropy. Since it’s inception, AZ Gives Day has raised more than $13.4 million dollars for nonprofits statewide. This year the Harvest Compassion Center was able to partner with AZ Gives Day and raise over $12,000! Thank you to all who donated on April 3rd helping make this one day of giving truly impactful! For more information about AZ Gives Day please visit their website at: www.azgives.org

The HCC feels truly blessed by each dollar raised through these two fundraising programs. Without the generous gifts of others, the outreach of Harvest Compassion Centers does not happen!

Did you miss donating your state Tax Credit or forget to donate on April 3rd…. no problem, sign up today to become HCC’s newest FEED 1 Partner for only $28.00 dollars a month and feed one family with us! The need is greater than we ever imagined, join us as we feed, clothe and serve our neighbors!