The summer for the Vaughn family is always packed. Some people experience the “lazy days of summer”, but we are of those that have discovered that summer is our craziest and busiest time of the year. When our kids were younger we enjoyed the lazy days. We would scope out the VBS schedules in our community and hit as many different ones as we could and then spend the rest of the day somewhere in the water or in the shade. However, once our girls got big enough to serve along side of us… the lazy days were left behind us.
This year we will begin the month of June serving as a family for the FCA Youth All Star Baseball Tournament. We will be given the opportunity to share and show the gospel to at least two hundred seven through ten years olds and their coaches, along with whoever is there to support them. Then we will serve with our church as we host a VBS that reaches at least a thousand kids (kindergarten through 8th grade) in our community. The last day of VBS we will all leave that same afternoon for Orlando, where we will serve with the International Children’s Ministry through First Baptist Kissimmee. We will return from Orlando and the first of July, Shelby and Rebekah will be attending Camp at Shocco. Rebekah as a student and Shelby will be serving as a student intern. Then Shelby will be leaving to serve with the Romanian American Missions in Spain. Of course July and August will be filled for me with more opportunities to serve with the FCA with our local camps and community events.
The Vaughn family summer is all about purposely sharing and showing the gospel with as many people as the Lord allows to cross our path. We are thankful to be able to do so. We are also thankful, and give thanks to God, for all those who partner with us through giving and participating in the fundraising opportunities that go toward the cost of serving.
We thank God for them, for those who partner with us in ministry, go with us where ever we go. When we stand before the Lord one day and give an account for our deeds, because of their partnership, who we reach they reach, who we serve they serve. It’s not just about the momentary earthly financial provision, it’s about an eternal heavenly treasure deposit.
As I stepped into mission work with the FCA the Lord gave me many passages in Scripture that I cling to as I raise funds for this ministry. This is hard for me, and we have learned through our Bekah’s first mission trip fundraising opportunity that she has my struggle with this endeavor as well. It took months of prayer and preparation for the Lord to get me ready to step out in faith and seek the needed funds for the ministry of FCA to be able to bring me on staff. One of the passages He gave me was Philippians 4:15-20,
15 You yourselves also know, Philippians, that at the first preaching of the gospel, after I left Macedonia, no church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving but you alone; 16 for even in Thessalonica you sent a gift more than once for my needs. 17 Not that I seek the gift itself, but I seek for the profit which increases to your account. 18 But I have received everything in full and have an abundance; I am amply supplied, having received from Epaphroditus what you have sent, a fragrant aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well-pleasing to God.19 And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. 20 Now to our God and Father be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
The Lord had to teach me that when I went out to seek funds for the ministry I was not asking people to give to me, I was simply being used by Him to give people an opportunity to give to HIM.
As I am finishing up my last week of teaching through the life of David, I was reminded of this truth again through 1 Chronicles 29:9-18,
9 Then the people rejoiced because they had offered so willingly, for they made their offering to the Lord with a whole heart, and King David also rejoiced greatly. 10 So David blessed the Lord in the sight of all the assembly; and David said, “Blessed are You, O Lord God of Israel our father, forever and ever. 11 Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, indeed everything that is in the heavens and the earth; Yours is the dominion, O Lord, and You exalt Yourself as head over all. 12 Both riches and honor come from You, and You rule over all, and in Your hand is power and might; and it lies in Your hand to make great and to strengthen everyone. 13 Now therefore, our God, we thank You, and praise Your glorious name.
14 “But who am I and who are my people that we should be able to offer as generously as this? For all things come from You, and from Your hand we have given You. 15 For we are sojourners before You, and tenants, as all our fathers were; our days on the earth are like a shadow, and there is no hope. 16 O Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided to build You a house for Your holy name, it is from Your hand, and all is Yours. 17 Since I know, O my God, that You try the heart and delight in uprightness, I, in the integrity of my heart, have willingly offered all these things; so now with joy I have seen Your people, who are present here, make their offerings willingly to You. 18 O Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, our fathers, preserve this forever in the intentions of the heart of Your people, and direct their heart to You;
So as I think on all those who have chosen to partner with us, and as I think on the God who has called us and chosen us, my heart cries out with David, “but who am I and who are my people that we should be able to offer as generously as this? For all things come from You, and from Your hand we have given You...”
I do not know why the Lord has saw fit to allow our family to serve Him in this way, but I am so very grateful that He has… To see where this Vaughn family began, to know the pit that He pulled us up out of, and to know, that I know, that I know what He can do with any wretch that cries out to be saved from this body of death (Romans 7:24) is why I push through the awkward to ask others to join us on the mission.
33 Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways! 34 For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who became His counselor? 35 Or who has first given to Him that it might be paid back to him again? 36 For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.