I had a fantastic experience last night at "Best of the Blessed," an annual fundraiser for the Christian Women's Job Corps of Guntersville. I've attended it every year since it began, and this year my dear brother Mark Brickey was kind enough to invite me to join him at a table sponsored by Sand Mountain Toyota. The event was hosted by the Church at Lake Guntersville, which has been blessed to do this each year.
If you've never been to this event, make sure you get a ticket next year. If you're a married man, it makes a fantastic date for your wife -unless your wife is like mine and insists on working. Of course, having such a wife is a great blessing itself.
The food was good, as it always has been. This year they raised the bar by serving on real China, though the settings have always been classy. The musical talent was diverse and entertaining. A group from Sweet Home Baptist did a fine job opening, followed by the Church of Christ Chorale -a very talented group. The First Baptist Pickers did a set of songs that reminded me of my younger days in an old Country Church.
The man whole really set the bar, though, was Zac Hicks. The boy has talent. He played acoustical guitar, but used a looping box that allowed him to accompany himself in an ever growing arrangement that ended in a crescendo of sound. He was literally a one man band, and a very good one. He even managed to make "Old MacDonald" sound good in an impromptu composition.
She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.
She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.”
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.
Nothing, however, compared to the main event. Two of the ladies gave their testimonies about how CWJC had "lifted their heads." Every year we get to hear about the powerful work of the Holy Spirit in this ministry. Women turn their backs on lives of poverty, drug abuse, crime, abuse, and a whole host of evils. They choose to follow Jesus Christ and be changed by him. The two ladies this year both told of how God had brought them out of sin and broken homes, and restored their families.
I had a chance to meet one of the ladies who graduated several years ago when I first served on the Board of Directors. She and her husband, both strong believers in Jesus, were led by the Lord to sponsor a table for $1,000. She is now serving as a leader and mentor to other women through CWJC. Truly God has lifted her up and made her a woman of strength and character.
Someone asked me what keeps drawing people to CWJC, and I answered that the ministry is like flypaper. Once you touch it you're stuck, there's no getting away. The work of the Holy Spirit, when it is obvious like this, is not something you can walk away from. I'm already thinking ahead to a group of women coming to Beirut to set up the first CWJC in Lebanon. Wouldn't that be great?
My hat is off to Site Coordinator Shelia Banks, who is stealing all the crowns in Glory, and to the many volunteers and leaders who serve in CWJC. Brenda Hicks has been as blessing there, as she is with everything she touches. Thank you all for your obedience.