Tim, Donna, John, Tiffany, Cynthia, and Angelia Handing Out Water

What a Week!

Hi GracePoint,

We celebrated a great holiday in our country where we got to reflect and be reminded of our great freedom here in America. We also had a great opportunity to love on our community this week. There are several stories but I will just share one with you for now. Angelia and I took a break from the booth and grabbed the kids and went down to the plaza area to watch the parade. As the parade went on, there was great excitement and cheering for various entries. There was a great spirit of celebration, even amid the polarizing political entries.

However, as the parade reached its halfway point, one entry began coming through our area and the crowd grew very quiet. Here marching through the streets of Ashland was a group of people with banners and signs and a van covered in signage declaring God’s wrath and judgment on this earth. The verbiage was reflective of the “turn or burn” message of hell, fire, and brimstone preaching. A couple people shouted at those a part of the entry as they passed by but the deafening silence was quick and vivid, standing in stark contrast to the overall tambour of the crowd throughout the parade.

Later, someone stopped by our booth and noted a very different feel on our end of the booth area. They commented that on the other end there are booths that have signs asking if you are going to hell, heaven, or not sure, and declaring God’s wrath for those who do not accept Him. As he continued, he said… “but on this side, you (GracePoint) are handing out free water to people, loving on the community… I think that is awesome what you are doing, truly amazing.”

Scripture says that “they (the world) will know us by our love.” That is why we were there. That is why over 3600 bottles of water were handed out. That is why we need to be present in our community. That is why we must live out our faith. People who came past our booth were genuinely thankful for our presence and that we were really doing what we say – serving our world.

Thank you for your generous spirit to give of your time and your resources so that we can be a beacon of light in the darkness of our world. We are making a difference, even if it is just one bottle of water at a time.

– Pastor Phil Burkhart