NewSpring Volunteer Appreciation

Words can’t describe what I experienced at NewSpring last night. The appreciation banquet for church volunteers was truly a blessing. There are over 1300 volunteers who have served well over 100,000 hours year to date thus making NewSpring more effective financially, not to mention the lives that are changed as a result of our efforts.

So NewSpring staff invited all 1300 of us to be appreciated. They literally clapped and cheered for us outside as we got out of our cars and approached the building. They served us a nice meal. Everyone socialized. The entire atrium was full of excitement and a warm sense of commonality. We all share the love of Jesus and the passionate vision of NewSpring to minister to people.

There were prizes and gifts, things that showed appreciation and generated excitement for everyone. Everyone was moved by the humble tears of Sherry Morehead, Director of Volunteers. She loves what she does and on a daily basis she helps people find a place to serve and keeps all the volunteer team leaders working like a well oiled machine. She is so dedicated and inspires us all the way she leads by example.

The band rocked! They always do. But a few weeks ago a volunteers were surveyed to find out what our favorite songs are. Lee (our worship leader) was surprised at some of the choices we made, but it was affirmation that NewSpring volunteers aren’t just focused on what is cool but on what glorifies God the most. The band led us in moving worship and prepared us for Perry’s message.

I had no idea this even was going to be so similar to a church service. But it was different. Perry delivered a message tailored for volunteers who rally in teamwork to make God’s dream work. He used the comparison of the Chicago Bulls going from a dream team to a losing team when key players were let go in the late 90’s. Without the key roles of NewSpring volunteers the work God is doing in Anderson, SC wouldn’t be possible. Perry is such an excellent communicator you would have to hear his message for yourself to understand how great it was.

The most emotional moments of the entire evening, at least for me, was watching the big screen video clips of people who’s lives are changed because of NewSpring volunteers. There was the lady who was in an accident causing her to be quadriplegic. NewSpring volunteers built a wheelchair ramp at her home that has changed her life. She can get out in case of emergency. She can get out and about independently. She started a support group for quadriplegics. She looked straight in to the camera with tears in her eyes and expressed sincere thanks to the guys who did something so simple that had such a big impact on her. Another family’s lives have been changed because we have special needs volunteers who can take care of their autistic daughter. Other churches have been forced to ask them not to come to their church because they didn’t have anyone to care for an autistic person. There is no shortage of stories telling the impact NewSpring volunteers make on peoples’ lives. But I never get tired of hearing them. Each and every testimony brings me to tears.

I thank God every day for his blessings and mercy. I ask him for wisdom and guidance. I ask him to just use me for his service and show me his will and purpose for my life. It is such a blessing to be ministered to the way NewSpring does it. I am always gaining wisdom and guidance through messages and experiences NewSpring delivers. God is using me in ways I never expected. I feel more and more in line with God’s purpose for my life all the time. Isn’t God amazing?

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