Judy, above and Joe, below are two of the team who come every Tuesday from Pastor Bruce's Quartzsite Assembly of God Church to cook and serve dinner. Thank you all for your volunteers and dedication!
Pastor Linda, kitchen manager and so much more....
Nathan (l) at the river with Pastor Mike
If you don't find yourself among these web pages, please don't be offended.We attempted to provide a realistic diversity of stories and pictures that convey the spirit of The Isaiah 58 Project. Thank you.
One of the important ministries of Isaiah 58 is that of Baptism. Usually after a Sunday morning service, people carpool down to the Colorado River about 15 minutes away from Quartzsite. This year the last weekend in February, several individuals were baptized. 52 year-old Nathan Tyrone Turley was among them. Nathan describes himself as a previous criminal—among other things. When he was 28, he robbed a bank and spent 3 years in a federal prison. In December of 2015, he came to Isaiah 58 for meals and began attending services and Bible studies. Nathan said, “I’d been praying for change for 2 years.” In December he had a decision to make. He had been wronged by an individual and was going to right things in the wrong way. The Lord had other plans and brought him to Quartzsite instead.
Nathan explains, “There was an internal battle inside me. I was accustomed to doing my own thing and going my own way, but Jesus was pulling on me. He truly doesn’t give up. I started coming to eat at Isaiah 58. Changes started to happen as I started talking to different people and comparing what I observed in the people eating outside with the people inside. (Many of the young people traveling around the country sit together and eat outside.) I was being drawn back to the Lord. I went to Joe Ferguson’s Big Gospel Revival tent one night and rededicated my life to the Lord.”
In addition to his attendance at the daily morning devotions at Isaiah 58, Church members Larry and Betty took him under wing to disciple him, regularly studying the Bible.
“I started understanding the Scriptures,” Nathan explains. “Getting involved in daily Bible study, I began to get direction; my life started flowing smoothly in the right path. I had read the Bible before but didn’t really get it.
“After my baptism, forgiveness became much more meaningful,” Nathan continues. “I discovered that I could love myself. Grace. I was amazed that God could or would love even me. Also, I have discernment now about people. One really neat part is that I got my dreams back. For a long time I was not able to remember them.
Finally, the Lord took away my addiction to marijuana. My goal before was not to run out of weed (marijuana); my goal now is eternal life and to walk with the Lord at all times.”
Many of the people who come to Isaiah 58 for meals are not interested in the things of God and will not come into the Church. Nathan was different. It was an encouragement to see God working in his life, his desire to come to the services and Bible studies, and the big smile on his face. He left Isaiah with definite plans for the future: to make some money working in Southern California. Now he is in Idaho helping Larry and Betty at their home.
"I thank Larry for Sunday School. I have learned of a God who is not a strict Father. The Holy Spirit has come and taken over my life. Jesus is great; God is amazing." -- anon.
Praise the Lord
Having been sick for several weeks, Al (photo) went forward in church for prayer. "It was almost worth getting sick, having everyone praying for me, " he testified. That night at dinner he was healed and returned to the 'Glorious Dish Washing Team."
Since our season focused on studying the word of God, we held just one very special concert in February--the Park's Family: six people, ten instruments. To learn more about them, visit www.parksfamilymusic.org
Wake up, stand up, and speak up while we still can. We are not called to make friends but to preach the Word.
"Dear Brothers and Sisters, It's time for an update on how the ministry operated this season. The kitchen served over 14,000 dinners from November 1st through through the month of April. I want to thank the Lord for His provisions and all our volunteers for their enthusiasm.
As I watched, their ministry to all was an inspiration to me. Each tray of food passed out was served with a smile and words of encouragement and friendship. You guys are totally awesome!
We also have a new shower house. (See SHOWER OPENS above. It's a block building with one shower, one toilet and one sink. It may not sound very exciting, but seeing that we are not in the shower business, it is totally efficient to meet our needs. This is how God works. The day our shower house was finished, the pipes in the old one gave out. I'd like to thank our Wisconsin brothers from the Northern Lakes Cumberland Church for all their help. They made two trips to be a part of the construction process. We had great fellowship on each visit.
Our new food bank is also operating smoothly. We can keep it at an even temperature during our summer months. Ivan and Shirley, the food bank team, are doing a wonderful service to the Lord and Isaiah 58. (Please see PEOPLE'S FOOD BANK under MORE ABOUT US.)
I would also like to thank our office staff for their faithfulness Monday through Saturday 9 a.m. through 5 p.m. all year long. We have two shifts a day. Maybe we can get a few of them to share with you what it it like. After 5 Mike answers the phone at home, so we are a 24-7 operation.
Our year-round staff deserves a word of praise. First of all this is not an easy breezy ministry. It requires total dedication and a right heart to minister to the needs of the people who come to us for help. Sometimes the needs arrive at a very inconvenient time. This requires a certain amount of maturity, both spiritually and emotionally. That means no deep sighing or eye rolling, ha ha. Seriously, all these things do work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose.
Please pray for this ministry that God would continue to provide what is needed to function to His Glory in the days ahead. Let us all be in His service, Pastor Linda
p.s. see Clothing Hut story on MORE ABOUT US page and Staff Slide Show on OUR STORY under HOME.