Angel Food Ministries @ Live Oak Baptist Church

Changing Lives for Jesus, One Box at a Time!

Baskin-Robbins® 31¢ Scoop Night – April 29, 2009 April 29, 2009

Filed under: Community Information — Chandra Martin, LOBC Angel Food Coordinator @ 11:33 AM

baskinrobbins31scoopnightIt’s time for the 3rd Annual 31 Cent Scoop Night at Baskin-Robbins® to honor America’s firefighters with a $100,000 donation to the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) National Junior Firefighter Program.

Participating stores will reduce prices of small ice cream scoops to 31 cents*. At some locations, you may also have an opportunity to make a donation to local fire charities.

This event is only held between 5pm and 10pm TONIGHT ONLY (April 29th).

For more information, please visit the Baskin-Robbins® website.

(Thanks Mrs. Donna for the heads-up!)

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April 2009 Distribution Held April 26, 2009

Filed under: Angel Food Distribution — Chandra Martin, LOBC Angel Food Coordinator @ 8:58 PM
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We held our April 2009 distribution on Saturday, April 25th from 7am until 9am.  The truck was there, waiting for us, at 4am, and we got started.

This distribution was special for me because it was our 1 year anniversary as a host site with Angel Food Ministries!  We also had a couple of other special things happen.

Mrs. Rhonda brought some stuffed animals of all shapes, types, and sizes to be given away during distribution.  These were a hit with kids and grown ups!  Thanks, Mrs. Rhonda!

The Denham Springs Relay for Life Event was held the night before and when they finished up bright and early Saturday morning, they brought bananas, granola bars, and Crystal Lite mix that ended up being extras so we could give those away during distribution, as well.  Thanks, guys, the bananas went in about 30 minutes!  The granola bars were all gone by the end of distribution and only a few Crystal Lite mixes were left.

The volunteers that came to help out with distribution were amazing, as usual.  It is astonishing how these folks just dig in and do whatever is necessary to make things run as smoothly as possible.  A special thanks from me to you for your dedication and hard work!  This could not happen without you all!

God has really taken the Angel Food Ministry at Live Oak Baptist Church and done some amazing things with it.  Expect some new and exciting things to appear during distribution over the next year.

Thanks to all of those who came out to help and to those who came to pick up their boxes.  I love you all, dearly!

Jake P and Tyler B (aka Texas) take a load out to someone's car.

Jake P and Tyler B (aka Texas) take a load out to someone's car.

For more photos from distribution, be sure to click the Photos tab at the top of the page.

If you aren’t participating in Angel Food, either by purchasing the boxes or volunteering, I encourage you to get in on it.  Either way, Angel Food will be a blessing to you!

 

The Real Reason We Need to Forgive Others April 24, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Chandra Martin, LOBC Angel Food Coordinator @ 6:52 PM
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I got an email today that had a very moving message that sparked some thought on my part.  Yeah, scary, I know!

Anyway, how difficult is it for you to forgive someone who wrongs you?  For me, it’s fairly difficult most of the time.  I wouldn’t consider myself a grudge-holder, but forgiveness doesn’t come easy, either.  Isn’t it funny how we want to be forgiven by people we do wrong, but don’t want to forgive others that do something to us?

I thought I’d share this email with you all, with the hope that it gives you a new perspective on forgiveness.

One day a while back, a man, his heart heavy with grief, was walking in the woods.  As he thought about his life, he knew many things were not right.  He thought about those who had lied about him back when he had a job.

His thoughts turned to those who had  stolen his things and cheated him.  He remembered family that had passed on..  His mind turned to the illness he had, that no one could cure.  His very soul was filled with anger, resentment, and frustration.

Standing there, searching for answers he could not find, knowing all else had failed him, he knelt at the base of an old oak tree to seek the One he knew would always be there.  And with tears in his eyes, he prayed:

‘Lord,You have done wonderful things for me in this life.  You have told me to do many things for You, and I happily obeyed. Today, You have told me to forgive.  I am sad, Lord, because I cannot.  I don’t know how.  It is not fair, Lord.  I didn’t deserve these wrongs that were done against me and I shouldn’t have to forgive.  As perfect as Your way is Lord, this one thing I cannot do, for I don’t know how to forgive.  My anger is so deep Lord, I fear I may not hear You, but I pray You teach me to do the one thing I cannot do:  Teach me to forgive.’

As he knelt there in the quiet shade of that old oak tree, he felt something fall onto his shoulder.  He opened his eyes.  Out of the corner of one eye, he saw something red  on his shirt.  He could not turn to see what it was because where the oak tree had been was a large square piece of wood in the ground.  He raised his head and saw two feet held to the wood with a large spike through them.

He raised his head more and tears came to his eyes as he saw Jesus hanging on a cross.  He saw spikes in His hands, a gash in His side, a torn and battered body, deep thorns sunk into His head.   Finally, he saw the suffering and pain on His precious face. As their eyes met, the man’s tears turned to sobbing, and Jesus began to speak.

‘Have you ever told a  lie?’  He asked?

The man answered – ‘Yes, Lord.’

‘Have you ever been given too much  change and kept it?’

The man answered – ‘Yes, Lord.’  And the man sobbed more and more.

‘Have you ever taken something from work that wasn’t yours?’ Jesus asked.

And the man answered, ‘Yes,  Lord.’

‘Have you ever sworn, using my Father’s name in vain?’

The man, crying now, answered – ‘Yes, Lord.’

As Jesus asked many more times,  ‘Have you ever..’?  The man’s crying became uncontrollable, for he could only answer – ‘Yes, Lord’.

Then Jesus turned His head from one side to the other, and the man felt something fall on his other shoulder.  He looked and saw that it was the blood of Jesus. When he looked back up, his eyes met those of Jesus, and there was a look of love such as the man had never seen or known before.

Jesus said, ‘I didn’t deserve this either, but I forgive you.’

It may be hard to see how you’re going to get through something, but when you look back in life, you realize how true this statement is.

Read the following first line slowly and let it sink in.

If God brings you to it – He will bring you through it.

When Jesus died on the cross, He was thinking of you!

(original author unknown)

Now, we all know that we should forgive because we are forgiven, but doesn’t reading the above quote put it in a little clearer perspective?  I know it does for me.  Trust me, forgiveness is not nearly as painful for us as it was for Jesus.

 

I’ve Been Published! April 23, 2009

Filed under: News & Announcements — Chandra Martin, LOBC Angel Food Coordinator @ 8:42 AM
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Well, not really…

No book deals, I’m not a novel writer.  But I was invited to contribute to the Angel Food Ministries blog maintained by Juda Engelmayer at Angel Food headquarters.  What an honor!  So, what do I write?  What amazing insights can I post?  Well, those were my first thoughts.  But I just opened up the posting screen and decided to explain why I feel so strongly about the Angel Food ministry.  And it just…flowed.

Feel free to take a peek at the Angel Food Ministries main blog.  I’m also going to quote the article below:

What Angel Food Means

First of all, I’m honored to be allowed to contribute to the Angel Food Ministries blog. I want to shed a little light on how I became involved with Angel Food and how it’s changed me and my family, as well as our church.

I’m self-employed and times started getting hard, my income was up and down and budgeting household expenses was becoming more and more difficult without set income. Like many Americans, one of the first places we cut expenses was food. No steaks, no fancy meals, no eating out. We ate chicken or ground beef with every meal. One weekend around December 2007, we visited my grandparents in Oakdale, Louisiana, and God started to put his plan in motion.

We had heard my grandparents talk about the food they had been buying from Angel Food in the past, but I never really paid attention to it, they were living on a fixed income, so I assumed it was a “food pantry” or “commodities” that they were talking about. We thought our income level was too high to qualify for any help, and we honestly had never tried to apply for any help anywhere. We knew there were others that needed help much more than we did, so we chose to just tough it out and trust in God to fill in the gaps as he saw fit. I have to admit, at times it was difficult, and I couldn’t understand why God was allowing us to suffer.

While we were all sitting in the living room talking, I happened to see the Angel Food Ministries menu flier from the host site there in Oakdale, Christ Church. That was the first Angel Food menu I ever laid eyes on, and I was amazed! All of that for only thirty dollars? No way! So, like the good little private investigator I am, I started my research into Angel Food Ministries, there just had to be a catch, and I was going to find it. First, visit the website, then order the food. I’d find the catch, I was sure of it.

Well, there was no catch…I failed to find my target…something that very rarely happens, I consider myself a top-notch investigator. The truth can’t hide from me. And neither can most people, but that’s an entirely different topic, I digress…

Our first order was placed in December 2007 through The Rock Church in Zachary, Louisiana, the closest host site to our home, although it was about thirty minutes away. We barely made the deadline for December, so only a week or so wait. I was honestly worried that I had wasted thirty dollars on food that was going to be low quality.

So, it’s distribution day and I drive over to The Rock Church to pick up our one box we ordered as a “test run”. When I walked in their distribution room, I was amazed. There were about thirty, give or take a few, volunteers filling boxes, checking receipts, carrying food out for people, and what looked like a hundred other tasks. All of these people were spending their Saturday to do something for the community. I was touched, to say the least.

I turned my receipt in and got my box of food. The quality looked good from what I could see, but I was still a bit skeptical. I didn’t need anyone to carry my box out for me, so I put it in the trusty SUV and headed back home. We fixed something out of it that night for dinner. I’m sorry, but that was over a year ago, and I can’t for the life of me remember what we ate. Whatever it was, it was enough to prove to me that the food was high quality! I remember commenting to my wife, “I sure wish someone would start a host site closer to our area.” Famous last words, indeed!

Soon after that, God turned up the heat a bit and started tugging at me. My church has a true passion for outreach and volunteering, so why couldn’t we do this? But my hang-up was, “God, I’m not a minister, I don’t do outreach, I don’t want to do this, I’ll help, but I don’t want to oversee it.”

After trying to convince God that I knew better (why do we always try to start that fight, anyway?), he proved to me that I didn’t. I couldn’t sleep well at night because it was always on my mind. I finally gave in and called The Rock Church and offered to volunteer at their next distribution. Like any good volunteer-based group would do, they graciously accepted. I bit the bullet and got there to help around six in the morning on distribution day. I helped to unload the truck, carry out boxes of food, and watch their entire process, plugging in as needed.

I have a knack for over-organization, so my wheels were already spinning. Topping that, though, was the family I saw at distribution that day where the children were so excited over the food they were getting in their box. Now we were almost broke, financially, but my children never got that excited over food, I had a good cry on the way home thinking about those children. That was the deal-maker for me. I was now an Angel Food advocate and would participate in the program as a volunteer, whether my church wanted to be a host site or not.

I put a Power Point presentation together that included an Angel Food promo video and pictures of the food in one of our food boxes. The pastor and deacons were all for it. But the church had to vote on it at the next business meeting. Passed with flying colors! Did I mention that my church has a true heart for outreach and volunteering?

Since Angel Food, our church membership has become even better at thinking outside the box. We are not your “typical” Southern Baptist church. My pastor, deacons, and fellow members are amazing. We’ve had a few families join the church since they started ordering food boxes, but it’s not the “joining” that’s important, it’s getting to see a child who you first met through Angel Food get baptized on a Sunday morning! God is so good!

And well, here we are, April 2009, and Live Oak Baptist Church has been an Angel Food host site for a year. What an amazing ride! I still can’t figure out who has been effected the most, the community or me and my family. It’s a neck and neck race, I can tell you. I have an amazing wife who jumped in with me who takes orders for the next month, a thirteen year old son that helps carry boxes to cars, my eight year old daughter is the “Magazine Princess”, and my four year old daughter is the life of the party – she’s everywhere at once!

So many changes have happened with me and my family over this year. Participating in the Angel Food outreach has drawn me closer to my family, closer to my church family, and closer to God. There is a feeling that can’t be described when distribution is over…if I had to put it into words, it’d be somewhere between exhaustion and elation. But, wow! Every month, around 200 families come through our doors to pick up their food boxes.

I used to be scared to talk about God’s love to anyone. Now, it just flows when needed. I make sure to come into contact with every person that picks up during distribution. I’ve already learned most of the regulars’ names, heard some heart-wrenching stories, cried with some, prayed with some, and I love them all, dearly.

So, what does Angel Food mean to my church, to me and to my family? It means hope, yes, but most of all, it means love. True love for our brothers and sisters who are hurting.

If you are reading this and have never ordered Angel Food, or if you are hurting financially, and need to catch a break somewhere, please search for a host site in your area. You can find host sites using the search by ZIP code feature at http://www.angelfoodministries.com.

I hope you guys can understand after reading this why the Angel Food ministry is so important to me, not to mention this community and this country.  Angel Food is now in 40 states, so make sure you tell your family and friends so they can check for a host site in their area.

 

May Menu Available April 16, 2009

Filed under: News & Announcements — Chandra Martin, LOBC Angel Food Coordinator @ 10:51 AM
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The May 2009 Angel Food Menu is now available.  Online ordering has also been activated for the May menu.  Be sure to check the Current Menu tab to see the new menu.

There is a new special available this month, the “Latin Flavors” Fresh Fruit ang Veggie Box.  Some interesting things in there.  Time to have a Fiesta Night!

As always, there is a menu version that can be downloaded, printed, and passed out if you choose. It is designed to be a two-sided flier.  The front side has the menu, the back side has the ordering days and other information.

Also pay close attention to the ordering dates for May.  In-person orders WILL be taken on April’s Distribution Day (Saturday, April 25th from 7am-9am) but WILL NOT be taken any the following week. Online ordering will run from now until May 17th at 11pm Central Time.

 

April 15th – US Tax Deadline April 15, 2009

Filed under: News & Announcements — Chandra Martin, LOBC Angel Food Coordinator @ 1:00 PM

It’s that time of the year, dreaded by many Americans, looked forward to by some because of the refund they are getting.  I thought I’d give a little glimpse into my take on taxes.

Do I like paying them?  Of course not.  Should I pay them? Definitely.  Jesus was asked once about taxes. Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. “Teacher,” they said, “we know you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren’t swayed by men, because you pay no attention to who they are. Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?” But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? Show me the coin used for paying the tax.” They brought him a denarius, and he asked them, “Whose portrait is this? And whose inscription?” “Caesar’s,” they replied. Then he said to them, “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”When they heard this, they were amazed. So they left him and went away. (Matthew 22:15-22 NIV)

So we all know as US citizens that a portion of what we make the government has already laid claim to (tax law).  We may not like it, but it’s our duty as citizens of the United States to pay taxes.  The leaders we’ve elected to oversee our government have to get money to operate with somehow.  We may not agree with all of their projects and money handling, but we have no choice.

So, your “tax day” can be miserable or it can be slightly pleasant.  Nobody expects us to be 100% happy paying in because enough wasn’t withheld from our paychecks or paid in quarterly by those of us self-employed, but look at the bright side of it all.

Look at what you DO get to keep.  Look at what you made for the year.  Remember that since we all belong to God, so does our income.  So when you write that check for taxes, don’t let it get you down.  It could be worse, you could have a big fat ZERO for income.

If you don’t like how the government handles it finances, be sure to pay attention to who you are voting for and what their fiscal spending values are.

I’ll be honest, in the past, I’ve dreaded my taxes every year.  But this year was a little different.  I truly thought that I would have to pay in some this time because of the changes in the tax laws.  But I didn’t “dread” my taxes this year, I procrastinated on actually preparing them, but I didn’t dread them. I managed to come out of it all with a little refund, not as good as last year’s, but a refund, nonetheless.

Oh, and by the way, if you feel like you didn’t have enough charitable contributions to include on your return this time…(shameless plug for donations here)…remember that you can make a tax deductible donation to the Live Oak Baptist Church Angel Food Program, just get in touch with me and I can give you a receipt for your donation. 🙂

For more commentary on subject of Christians and taxes, please take a look at The Christian Taxpayer, written by Steve Scalici.

 

Chili’s in Baton Rouge teams up with Families Helping Families of Greater Baton Rouge – Tuesday, April 14th ONLY April 13, 2009

Filed under: Community Information — Chandra Martin, LOBC Angel Food Coordinator @ 3:20 PM
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Let’s Get Together!

Chili's Logo
Chili’s is teaming up with Families Helping Families of Greater Baton Rouge to raise funds to enhance the Autism resources we provide to families and individuals through the Lending Library at our center.

Come join us on Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 and we will donate 10% of your check to FHFGBR. Bring your family and friends and come ready to eat a lot!

PLEASE BE SURE TO BRING THIS FLYER WITH YOU IF YOU ARE PAYING!

WE CAN EVEN FAX YOU A COPY!

Where:
Chili’s College Drive
4550 Constitution Blvd.
Baton Rouge, LA 70808

When:
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
ALL DAY!

Please contact Kimberly Brown for more information about our charity event.
Phone: 225-216-7474
Email: kbrown@fhfgbr.org

Families Helping Families of Greater Baton Rouge, Inc.
778 Chevelle Drive
Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70806
phone: 225-216-7474
fax: 225-216-7977
toll free: 1-866-216-7474
www.fhfgbr.org