She stopped by our blog to do both and interview and a giveaway with us! Have fun and don't forget to enter. Please, read the rules before leaving a comment. You must leave your e-mail address or we won't be able to contact you.
I recently read and reviewed your book How Shall We Feed Them? It’s really handy on starting a food pantry. How did you compile all the information together? Was it quite a process?
I am so thankful that God is my friend. Good record keeping along with God by my side, enabled me to remember what took place in early 2005 when we began Cupboards for Christ ministry. The beginning of 2008, when I stepped down as food pantry coordinator, God ask that I begin writing on how He had directed me to organize the food pantry. I do believe God's timing for this was important because it was still very fresh in my mind. Basic book information was completed by fall of 2008 and was turned into the publisher by summer of 2009. The book was released by Winepress books in February 2010.
I like that you added a stop and pray section with each chapter. Seeking God before making a decision has to be the most important key presented in the book. When and how did you know God was leading you into this ministry?
As a young adult I began giving in secret to those in need. Periodically God would ask me to purchase food for a family or a college student or place money anonymously in an envelope to give to someone. As a result of wanting to serve Him and hear His voice, God ask me to take the next step and organize the food pantry at the church I had been attending for over twelve years. The end of 2004 I answered the call and the beginning of 2005 Cupboards for Christ was formed.
In today’s economy, it’s hard for some families to make it through financially. What are the beginning steps for finding and meeting their needs?
Listening to the Holy Spirit is key. Times are hard and families are having to make tough choices. If you or I pray that our ears are open to hear the Holy Spirit, God will bring people into our path that are in need. When the Holy Spirit points out a need that needs to be met, ask Him how He would like for you to meet that need and put it into action.
What is the most rewarding part about running a food pantry?
I have found that the most rewarding part of a food pantry ministry for me is meeting and praying with the food recipients who come by for food. God brings people to our church doors wanting their physical needs to be met but little do they realize that God wants to meet their spiritual needs as well. Helping others lift their eyes up to the Lord giving thanks and praying for their concerns allows them to see that God loves them and cares about every need they have.
Is there any advice you have for people who are interested in opening a food pantry at their church or organization?
1. Seek the Lord first and ask that He take the lead in this ministry.
2. Choose godly volunteers to assist and work as a team.
3. Choose your food storage space wisely.
4. Food pantry guidelines need to be in place before you open your food pantry doors.
5. Be open to the Holy Spirit - His ways, His thoughts and ideas.
Do you plan on writing another book? If so, could you give us any insight into what that next one would be about?
Yes, I am currently writing a food pantry devotional book as an encouragement to those who volunteer in the food pantry minsitry.
There are many great Bible verses and quotes out there, but which of these apply to your journey in life?
Ephesians 6:7 "Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord and not men." I try to apply this verse when I am writing a devotional, serving my husband as his caretaker, taking care of my grandchildren, or when I am serving as a volunteer in the food pantry ministry.
Randomly Fun Questions:
When you’re not busy, what do you like to do in your spare time?
Bake, Hike, walk, ride my bike, write, spend time with my grandchildren, family and friends, watch movies, read and study God's word
Spring is almost upon us! What is your favorite characteristic of this season?
I love the colors of Spring. Watching trees and the flowers bloom is such a miracle that takes place right before your eyes.
We all seem to have collections of one item or another. Is there anything that you like to collect?
Cookbooks - I love to bake and try new recipes.
How can our bookworms best get in contact with you?
They are welcome to contact me through e-mail @ email@example.com or through my author weblog @ http://martygirardier.authorweblog.com/
Thanks, Marty! We loved doing this interview and giveaway with you. May God bless your wonderful ministry.
"Brother, are you okay? Do you and your family have food?" a neighbor asked. Immediately, the man began to cry. Wiping away his tears, he said it had been days since they had food in the house and they had two boys. Overwhelmed, the neighbor asked if he would receive food from the church. The answer was yes, so they got in the car and went to the church's food pantry. They were able to load them up! This is one of many stories of meeting the needs of hungry people you will find in this practical book. It provides everything an individual, church, or organization needs to establish or revitalize a food pantry, including specific, step-by-step instructions for: • Building a food pantry team • Choosing a place for the food pantry • Stocking and replenishing the shelves • Creating guidelines for food pantry recipients • Ministering to the food recipients Also included are tear-out materials to help set up a food pantry, including a detailed action plan, check-off lists, sign-up sheets, food recipient information sheets, and contribution sign-up sheets. Today more than ever, churches and Christian organizations need to meet the needs of increasing numbers of hungry people. Organizing a food pantry is a tangible way to do that. If you want to serve God by helping people in need, this inspiring book is for you.
Title: How Shall We Feed Them?
Author: Martha Girardier
Publisher: Pleasant Word (Division of WinePress Publishing)
Marty is giving away How Shall We Feed Them? to one bookworm! In order to enter, you must leave a comment with your e-mail address (so that we can contact you). US and Canada only, please. This giveaway starts today and ends on March 8th. A winner will be picked randomly (using random.org) and announced on the 9th. We will contact the winner and notify them by their e-mail address. If the winner doesn't respond within a few days, we will have to pick another. Good luck! =)