I had recently been praying for Jesus’ provision. He ended up giving me empty pizza boxes.
I can’t believe it!
Let me back up first.
As my time in Logan wanes to a close, I’ve been brainstorming how to leave well. The church has been incredibly gracious to invite me back after having spent the summer with them with YouthWorks. They’ve housed me and cared for me, and they’d love to have me back for another summer (or indefinitely). I can’t comment on the likelihood of that happening though, so I want to ensure that I leave well.
When I initially came back, there were certain goals we hoped I could accomplish. One of those goals was starting a youth group at our church. As someone with a degree in Youth Ministry, I feel competent enough leading a youth group; the issue resides in the fact that there are no youth in our church. That is a roadblock to starting a youth group.
But in the past three months I’ve rebuilt some relationships I’d made with local youth over the summer, and have made new relationship with other local teenagers. But with less than a month remaining in West Virginia, starting a youth group simply isn’t feasible.
What I am doing though is creating a Youth Room. It started by YouthWorks needing a newer, bigger space for Club and for Kids Club, but I am ensuring that it will be an excellent space for a youth group if and when such a group forms through this church.
One interesting aspect of remodeling this room is that I do not have a budget to work with. Formally, there are zero dollars allotted to rejuvenating this space. Consequently, I have to get just a little bit creative. The church does have gallons of donated paint that we’ve been using, along with other odds and ends that are available (scrap wood, old chairs, some carpet, et cetera).
I had been brainstorming ideas for wall art. Decor for the room seemed like one of the harder aspects to work around. But I managed to find a plethora of Logan or West Virginia related t-shirts in our clothes closet (or that I already owned). Imagining how to frame them, I stumbled upon the idea of using pizza boxes as a sort of (free) canvas frame. The t-shirts would be draped over them, stapled on, and then hung on the wall.
It seemed like a good enough idea but I didn’t know how I was going to get a bunch of empty pizza boxes. I had resolved to just embrace the awkwardness of going into Little Caesar’s for the sole purpose of asking for boxes, but before I got the opportunity, I had already acquired an incredibly random seven boxes. A lady from church had unexpectedly brought pizza to our church Bible study one week. The following week, a basketball team who was using our gym to practice bought pizza to celebrate their recent victory.
Most people might equate this to coincidence, but I like to believe that this was orchestrated. That Jesus takes such joy in providing for my needs (and for others!) that he would provide something as small and ridiculous as empty pizza boxes.
Jesus has provided for bigger things too–I haven’t had to go grocery shopping in over six weeks now (largely thanks to unexpected generosity from others).
To provide food shows that Jesus cares about my needs. To provide empty pizza boxes? That shows that He cares about my hopes and my desires. He takes joy in providing small things too.
And I can’t believe it.