God Faith to Double
How one BGMC coordinator prayed and put her faith into action
By Darlene DeCastro, Assembly of God, South Attleboro, Mass.
With the encouragement of my lead pastor, Randal Ackland (Assembly of God in South Attleboro, Mass.), my husband and I attended the BGMC Summit in Cabo San Lucas in January 2016. I went to the summit feeling discouraged because we didn’t meet our 2015 BGMC giving goal, but my desire was to learn everything I could from the missionaries and the national BGMC staff and to pick the brains of other BGMC leaders.
During dinner one night, I sat next to a BGMC leader who shared what fund-raisers she had done, one of which included the use of M&M tubes. While listening to the hearts of David and Mary Boyd (national BGMC director and coordinator) as well as the missionaries, my heart became burdened for the missions needs they presented. On the final night, we had a time of prayer followed by a challenge to help with the missionary projects that were presented. During the time of prayer, I sensed the Lord telling me to raise $6,000 for three specific missionary projects. The projects I picked were ones that I felt my church kids could relate to.
I work full time at our Christian school, Dayspring Christian Academy, and part-time as the children’s director at our church, so I knew my church kids who attend DCA would connect with the Vanuatu Christian school that was in disrepair. And since one of my sweet children’s church kids is deaf, the Mongolia Deaf Ministry presented at the summit really hit my heart.
When it was time to write down my faith promise, I gently reminded the Lord that we hadn’t even met our $3,500 BGMC goal in 2015. He impressed on me that all I had to do was the work and that He would provide. So I made a $6,000 faith promise and said, “Okay, Lord, let’s do it!”
My dear husband reminded me that I had just made three commitments, each for $2,000. With tears in my eyes, I looked at him and said, “Oh yes, I am well aware of that.”
After heading back home, I shared with Pastor Ackland all that had happened. He asked that I do the announcements on Sunday so I could report what happened at the summit. Sharing about the trip that Sunday morning was emotional and exciting, and our church family was so receptive and encouraging.
Throughout the year, we did various fund-raisers to try to meet our giving goal. In March we did March Missions Madness—where each week I would update our church family with a crazy video, have a special appearance from Buddy Barrel (my 3-foot grandson in a Buddy Barrel costume), and share which group (girls vs. boys) brought in the most BGMC offerings. Each Sunday in March, a boy and a girl would stand at the exit door with their Buddy Barrels and ask the adults to fill them up. We also devised a measuring tool rigged up with a florescent light that showed how much money we had raised.
In March alone, we raised $3,000!
Going into the fall season, our BGMC fund-raising was going well, but I started to get a bit nervous. I didn’t want to fall short again. Then the Lord reminded me about the fund-raising idea with the M&M tubes, and I came up with the slogan, “We want our Quarterback back for BGMC!” Being from New England, our beloved Tom Brady, quarterback for the New England Patriots, had to serve a four-game suspension. So this BGMC slogan fit perfectly.
My husband and I purchased $200 worth of M&M tubes. Each tube holds $20 in quarters. The fund-raiser was promoted to our church family during the four-week period Tom Brady was out for suspension. We needed to raise $1,200 to reach our $6,000 goal. During those four weeks, our church family raised $1,747.08 for BGMC—praise God! Pictured right is me with our beloved Buddy Barrel as I announced to our church that we went “Above and Beyond” our $1,200 goal.
At the same time we were raising funds for the Mongolia Deaf Ministry, our church also started a deaf ministry with ASL classes for both adults and children. The timing of this exciting new ministry couldn’t have been more perfect. Our God is a God of details, working each one to perfection!
The BGMC theme “Above and Beyond” is certainly happening in South Attleboro, Massachusetts. God was faithful to his promise.
All I had to do was the work and the Lord certainly provided. Praise God for His faithfulness!