Hope Springs’ Third Annual Benefit Dinner proved to be an evening of encouragement, learning and vision for the future. Board Member Brad Howard welcomed the 50 or so attendees to this year’s dinner and spoke of the personal encouragement these dinners have been to him over the years. We were then blessed by ONE WORD, an eight member a cappella group who describe themselves simply as, “Eight people who love the Lord and love to sing,” both of which were obvious as they shared songs like, “Swing Low Sweet Chariot” and there version of “A Long Black Train”, recently made popular by Josh Turner.
Chris Gingles, Shepherd for the Madison Church of Christ, and new Vice President for Healing Hands International then shared the emotional change that has taken placed in his life since returning from a five nation tour of sub-Saharan Africa. After watching a brief video message Chris recorded of our Project Manager Ebenezer Udofia, he shared his personal impressions of this highly talented and able servant of the Lord.
Our Keynote speaker for the evening, Josiah (Si) Tilton, then shared from his many years working in Ghana, West Africa as a missionary followed by his present work with Ghana West Africa Missions. Si encouraged us to see how important humanitarian outreach is in opening doors for the message of Christ to be shared with those who do not know Him. We were all touch by the story of an 80+ year old lady who owned only one dress, a log her only piece of furniture, and who lived in a mud hut. Si told about how for a period of days she watched as a well was dug in her village. She watched every day without saying a word. When the well was done she had only one question for Si. “Why would anyone drill a well to help an 80+ year old woman?” Her question opened the door for Si to talk about the Lord who loved her and that she did not know. She became a follow of Christ and in just a matter of weeks died and left her mud hut for a mansion prepared for her in heaven.
Lee Hodges, President for Hope Springs then wrapped up the evening with a progress report and a challenging vision for the future. Brent Baldwin closed the program with a final word of encouragement and prayer. While the final total in not in, over $6,000 was raised.
We are thankful for each and everyone who came, many giving sacrificially in some trying economic times. Only God knows how to measure the true value of this evening.
(Just a brief word about our entertainment for the evening, ONE WORD. I believe this is one of the most talented groups I have heard in years. I can confidently say you would be blessed to have them sing for your function or event. If you would like to have more information drop me a note and I will pass it along to them.)