Challenge House 1 has been full of activity and planning for our busy summer season. We have also been living life with our neighbors…this includes the wonderful blessings and the gritty hard stuff.
Here is a glimpse of our month…
A huge blessing to our family has been the Durrett Avenue Neighborhood Association. We have made friends with the other board members, met many neighbors and have partners that also are seeking to see our neighborhood thrive.
We decided a good way to share information with our community would be through a Facebook page, so Ellen took on the task of creating it and shares duties with the Vice President of the Association with sharing posts of activities at Challenge House, in our neighborhood and in our community.
If you are a Challenge House 1 partner or live in Durrett Avenue Neighborhood we encourage you to like the page to receive updates:
Our Beautification committee for the city also has a Facebook page…we encourage our neighbors to nominate others that have beautified their property…if you would like to nominate your yard, but aren’t on Facebook or don’t have a camera…let us know – we would be happy to snap a photo for you!
A favorite part of May for us is that it is a time for planting and even a time for some crops to start producing….last year we planted the Broad Street Orchard in partnership with UK Extension Office and Micah’s Mission. We actually have begun to see the efforts of the labor put into the plantings with our first strawberry crop!
We walked to the orchard and we were able to pick three clamshells of strawberries. The best part…walking home and sharing them with our neighbors on the way and then taking the rest to share with our neighbors at the neighborhood association meeting that evening.
The biggest blessing of all with the orchard has been meeting “Shorty” he invested himself in the orchard from day one. Last year he faithfully mowed and weeded the orchard plot. He does the job for pride in the neighborhood, to be a good neighbor, not for recognition and he always disappears when we seek to offer praise or thanksgiving. He has been such a blessing and example in our walk to love our neighbor as ourselves.
With all the good in the neighborhood and our community comes the hard stuff…we are not immune to what many others face. An example of this surfaced last week when the window of our vehicle along with many others across our neighborhood and city were shot out with a BB or pellet gun. The insurance and Workman’s Auto Glass took care of us in less than two days, but we think of neighbors that may not have the funds or good insurance to replace broken windows by vandals.
This comes on the heels of several shootings and robberies within our town. It is frustrating and disheartening to see that all the programs, money, or education we promote it will not change what is happening….but what hope we have knowing this is a heart issue and we know the one that changes hearts!
On May 24th our family attended a Stop the Violence Rally at the Boys & Girls Club hosted by Means Avenue Baptist Church. It was wonderful to see men women and children standing against the violence that has recently plagued our neighborhoods. To see men of God proclaiming the Word of God and challenging us to walk worthy lives and to build relationships with those around us…to invest in our neighbors and let them know that Christ can be the answer.
We continue with our Wednesday Night Lady and Teen Girl Bible Study – Soup Conversations! It is always fun to see what group of ladies and teens we will have…some weeks we may have 3-4, other weeks, like last night we have to pull out extra chairs for everyone to sit! We have finished a study on finding the meaning of Easter and are now studying 1 John for the next few months. One thing is for sure we will have good soup, good fellowship in learning, and just meeting God there in His Word and prayer…ya’ll I can’t tell you how much these ladies bless my soul!
Amongst all the things we are doing in the month…we are always looking forward and planning for the months ahead…June will bring two summer programs – Be the Church with Hillcrest and a summer reading program for our students in Durrett Avenue neighborhood! We are so excited for both and continue to seek new ways to bless our neighbors and share the love of Christ with them.
If you would like to support us there are many ways:
…snacks and paper products (napkins, toilet paper, paper cups, etc) are always great additions to our ministry…
…volunteer your time to coordinate, lead, or assist in a program at Challenge House…the many partners we have are building wonderful relationships with the neighbors around us…
…prayer – we need prayers for safety in our neighborhoods for our neighbors and our ambassadors, for us to have divine appointments with our neighbors to partner in sharing Christ and to share Christ that do not know, prayer that we will share godly guidance with those that come to us for mentoring or support, prayer that hearts will be changed in our families, in our neighborhood, and in our town.