If you missed our CHAIRished Blessings event, you missed a wonderful experience. Over 500 people were in attendance. There was laughter, there was food, there was great music, and there were some of the most unusual and unique furniture and accessories on display! Oh, and people were having fun bidding during the silent auction. There may have been a little bit of “festive bidding wars” going on as there were folks who were passionate about some of the unique items. Overall the event was a huge success! You raised $40,000 for Love INC. We are so grateful to this community for showing up to the event and to our remarkable committee for all the hard work and effort organizing the event.

As it all came together and as we all praised God and gave him all the glory for the success of the fundraiser, I want to share with you what our Lord laid on my heart through the process. The booths or venues that displayed the unique furniture and all the accessories were all very well done. For weeks, even before Christmas, many folks from our committee, many of the participating churches and others spent some time in our warehouse looking for “treasures.” Old furniture to re-purpose, re-build, freshen up with paint and cleaning is not all fun! Polishing, scraping furniture, cleaning old silk flowers and digging through smelly stuff is something not everyone enjoys. As I watched so many folks come and go over the last several months, I had my doubts that some of the items would be something people would actually spend money on! One of the churches (Perritte Memorial Methodist) took a very old TV and re-purposed it to a beautiful chest with baskets for clothes and then took the old doors from the TV and made a bed-side table to match. Another church (First United Methodist) took an old side table and turned it upside down and made a beautiful dog bed that’s so unique! Another group from (First United Methodist) made a tee-pee out of bamboo that people literally fought over!

Others donated their own personal furniture and heirlooms that were just gorgeous items to build there venues. Our decorating committee took old bike rims, old Coke bottles, old bed springs, old chairs, vases and many things that had been discarded or thrown out and made some of the most unique table centerpieces that people paid good money for! As I looked at all the items on Friday evening before the doors opened, I had one of those moments with God where He opened my eyes to a bigger realization. Many of us are just like the old, dirty, thrown out, disregarded items in our warehouse. God can clean us up, re-purpose us and make us new. He will meet us just where we are and show us His way that will heal us, give us hope and a new life.

Our CHAIRished Blessings event is about a new and improved life of a sinner. We cherish Gods plan for our life. If we let Him and allow God to take over our life, we will know purpose, we will always be fresh, and we will know we are loved by our God who never replaces us. All He wanted is for us to love Him back and to live a life that is pleasing to Him.

Thank you all for attending, purchasing, serving and donating to the CHAIRished Blessings event.

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Current cases

• Single female living on fixed income. She is asking for rental assistance in the amount of $250 and utility assistance in the amount of $200. She has been struggling to catch up on her bills after vehicle repairs approximating $1,000. We have receipts for her payments. She managed to cover this unexpected expense with funds she had set aside but is now behind on her rent and utilities.

• Young married couple with two children, one with special needs who settled in Nacogdoches to be near family support. The family requested assistance with utilities in the amount of $90 and furniture and clothing. They were unable to pay these expenses due to the cost of their deposits when establishing new housing. We are able to help these families partially because of your generosity at the CHAIRished Blessings event and other community outreach. We thank you for your continued support of families in similar situations.

• Other validated requests are for new or gently used: sofas and love seats; pillows; any size bed frame; twin size or bunk beds; small dining tables; recliners.

Patti Goodrum is executive director of Love In the Name of Christ of Nacogdoches.

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