Thank you to Scott Woodall for submitting the content of this blog post.
In Galatians 5:6, the apostle Paul writes “the only thing that counts is faith expressing itself in love.” The River of Life Youth Mission Advance (River of Life) ministry is built on that basic truth. River of Life is a series of events held each summer aimed at enabling youth and adults, from many different churches, to come together to express the love of Jesus Christ by ministering to the people of a particular community through home repairs and improvements. Additionally, each event has the basic purpose of converting and discipling each participant into a passionate devotion to Jesus Christ and the understanding that Christianity is a life of ministry to others, especially to those in need.
June 21st through the 24th, Douglasville First United Methodist Church hosted a River of Life event for the first time in several years. Two local churches, Lithia Springs United Methodist and Midway United Methodist, along with Inman Park United Methodist located in Atlanta, joined on this journey of service and ministry to others. An estimated 100 youth and adult volunteers came together for three full days of service, fun, and worship. (See the slideshow!)
During the three days, the youth and adults completed 3 paint projects, two of which are currently supported by other local ministries in Douglasville. The teams completed two porches for local families, landscaping, wheel chair ramps for Fowler Homes, and an extremely difficult roof job for a local young family. Normally during these type of mission projects in the summer there are numerous complaints of heat, being tired, and wanting to know when quitting time was. We were all extremely blessed with a dedicated group of youth and adults who maintained continuous attitudes of perseverance, dedication, endurance, and love for others. There was never a sound of complaining, just laughter and fellowship all while doing our Lord’s work.
The event ended on Saturday night with a talent show followed by a service of reflection on the past three days. The service included Holy Communion, a foot washing service in order to reflect on Christ’s service to others, and it concluded with 11 professions of faith. God truly blessed the event in many ways. Through prayers, the event was funded financially, and through faith the event touched the lives of several local families and volunteers.