SERVICE PROJECTS

VESSEL staff desires to be the head, heart, and hands of Christ. If we aren't serving the less fortunate or even our sisters and brothers next door, then how much are we really growing in the head and heart areas of our Christian walks? VESSEL seeks to take on a handful of community projects every year in Blue Ridge, GA and the surrounding areas. 

2020 project list

MAY 30th

Getting these projects set up in May was a challenge as recent quarantine made planning more difficult. The Lord came through though as we were able to accomplish two service projects. These particular projects will require return work days as there are still needs that we will take on in the coming months.

 

Our first project was for the CLC (Christian Learning Center) in Blue Ridge, GA. This little non profit is an important part of the community in that they offer electives for high school students that are Christian focused. They always have various needs as a smaller non profit and we were able to fulfill many of their needs through a variety of ways. Interior painting, exterior painting, sidewalk pressure washing, landscaping, and other maintenance were performed. As usual our volunteers showed up to work and did not disappoint. It was a major blessing being able to serve the CLC as they are involved in kingdom work.

 

The second project that another part of our group went to work on was for the Ledford's. This is an older couple who is taking care of their grand kids despite the husband's blindness and their very small income. This tiny home desperately needed some love and attention as the kitchen inside was falling apart, the electrical work was in shambles, and only half the house had any siding on it. Thankfully, due to many helping hands and support from Joe Nickerson of Grace Mountain Builders and Electric we were able to make quite a bit of headway in our efforts to restore the Ledford's home closer to normalcy. There is much more work to be done there but what was accomplished was beautiful. Work got done but the family was touched, the children were engaged, a love offering was given, and at the end of the day our group gathered together with the Ledford family and prayed over them.

 

That is what these projects are chiefly about... showing the love of Christ to the needy. We serve practical needs, yes but more importantly we show off Christ in our serving, attitude, and spiritual encouragement. As we look ahead to future projects our hope is to share the love of Jesus more and more as we take on each challenge giving hope to those in whatever circumstances they may find themselves in. Thank you to all our volunteers as their constant commitment is not only sowing into the kingdom but is teaching others to do so as well.

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JULY 18th

This Saturday we were able to accomplish two service projects: A return trip to the Ledford family and an outing to Project Chimps. At the Ledford's, we finished all the siding and kitchen cabinet replacement. The family now has a functional home to raise their family in. The Lord provided for the Ledford's, and God gets the glory!

 

Projects Chimp is a sanctuary for chimpanzees that have lived some or all of their lives in experimental science labs. They are given a home to live out the rest of their lives peacefully after having a difficult experience growing up in a research environment. Even though Project Chimps is quite large, the funding consistency over the years has been lacking, so we offered up our free labor to accomplish projects that spanned from trail clearing to building enrichment devices for the chimps. We were able to save them a lot of man hours by working there as well as sharing Christ in our efforts as a body of believers. We look forward to returning in the future.

 

Thank you to our volunteers for their hard work and dedication to being on mission for Christ through the work of their hands. This was the first project I (Doug Serra) had to miss due to a foot injury, and seeing the passion and execution of this group on these projects was incredibly encouraging to me. The Lord has blessed Vessel with hands such as these.

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SEPTEMBER 19th

Details TBD!

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2019 project list

February 23

We took on two service projects. The first was in Morganton, GA, digging a new water line for an elderly woman who had been getting her water from the nearby creek. Our crew dug over 200 feet about a foot and a half deep for a new line. She now has running water.

 

Our second job was in Blairsville, GA. Our work there included inside clean up of Sue's house, carpet removal and a new hardwood floor, outside trash clean up, and biggest of all, a French drain dug and set around her entire house.

We were blessed to have saved these ladies thousands of dollars but more importantly, acted as the hands and feet of Christ.

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July 20

This time, our volunteers took on three service projects. The first was a return project to Sue's, where we had put in a french drain back in late February. This time, we demoed her kitchen cabinets, moved in her new furniture, cut back her grape vines that had overrun her deck, dug up and leveled out the ground behind and on the sides of her house, and cleaned out the cluttered storage area under her house.

 

While that job was underway, we sent two volunteers to Ava's place, which was in desperate need of lawn care and other outside attention. For someone who gives so much and asks for so little, we were thrilled to surprise her with a thorough job completed!

 

Our third project was the biggest as we helped a couple in need who have been trying to finish their little home for years With medical issues and financial problems, they haven't been able to afford the materials and labor needed. We sent half of our volunteers there, and together they wired the house for electricity.

 

God gave us a wonderful opportunity this past Saturday to help others in their desperation, and more importantly to share the truth of Christ whether in word or in action. Isaiah 58:10, "If you pour yourself out for the hungry and satisfy the desire of the afflicted, then shall your light rise in the darkness and your gloom be as the noonday."

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APRIL 20

God blessed our team of 20 with three projects across Young Harris, Blairsville and Blue Ridge. For one woman, we built a protective barrier for her trash cans to keep out wild animals. We also did several installation and building projects for a pastor of a small church. Lastly, we tackled one of the most intensive home hoarding situations any of us had ever seen. Much was accomplished, and the hands and feet of Christ were shown through our wonderful volunteers!

 

Even though the day was overwhelming at times, God is always faithful and shows up in unexpected ways. Praise God and His allowing us to serve him by serving others!

 

Acts 20:25, "In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, "It is better to give than to receive."

November 9

This batch of projects was the most challenging yet -- not because of the labor involved, as our volunteers yet again poured themselves out, conquering all that we had on the agenda, and in turn sharing a witness for the kingdom. These projects were testing due to some surrounding circumstances. Everything from potential rain, missing supplies, scheduling issues, and many other small hiccups threatened to greatly complicate what God had set before us. But we remember where it says in scripture, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28. Sure enough God came through and answered every concern, leaving not even the smallest issue unresolved.

And so this time around, we went back to Sue Price's once more to help put in some cabinets, haul off multiple loads of trash, repair a floor, and do some yard work. On our second site, we had a group chainsawing downed trees, splitting wood, stacking that wood for fire, and doing yard cleanup for an older lady named Janice who lives off the grid on just the bare basics. Finally, we sent a small group out to Susie's. As an elderly woman, there isn't much she can do for herself, and so there was yard work and unfinished rock work on the outside of her home that had never been completed.

With these projects all completed, we have finished a total of 12 service projects this year. It is incredible what has been accomplished and how God has used each of us in the lives of the less fortunate. It has been a massive blessing that has spoken to each one of us and has easily become one of our favorite things to do through Vessel.

 

I am beyond thankful for each one of these volunteers and the God-given heart they have shared with so many. God-willing we can step into even more in our serving in 2020. To anyone that these stories have touched, we thank God for the opportunity to serve as examples in some small way. Look forward to the coming months!

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Contact

Ministry Leader: Doug Serra

Cell: 706-970-0597

dougs@theridgeonline.net

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© 2019 The Ridge Community Church in Blue Ridge, GA.