August 2013 Service Project at UMOM

The INSPIRE Chorus had an amazing experience volunteering at a UMOM New Day Center yesterday. UMOM is a shelter for the homeless with dependent children and families in transition.

 

The project was a literacy night for the kids who are residents there. We arrived early and set up tables and chairs and blankets all over the room. We put on name tags and got out the bins of books sorted by age with colored dots. They had us spread several hundred books all over the room. The children living at the shelter then arrived with a very loud entrance searching for smiling volunteers who would be willing to read to them. We read and talked and laughed and some of us built book forts when the kids were tired of reading. One boy went around and collected all the name tags from the volunteers. The kids seemed so happy and we loved being part of such a great night of service. The workers at UMOM asked to take our group picture afterward. We then met up with the INSPIRE group for some frozen yogurt. What a great night.

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Practice, Practice, Practice

INSPIRE is rehearsing as our new group for our upcoming firesides. We have such a wonderful and talented group right now. Here are most of the men in our group practicing the song, “Go With Me” by Kenneth Cope that is in our “Truth Restored” Program.

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Kathy (yes I took this w/ Christ in the background on purpose) is one of our two wicked awesome piano players. We are so grateful for her service to INSPIRE. Not only does she play for the choir but she spends many hours helping choir members rehearse. She also puts up with the demands of Michael & I (this is no small feat).

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I am being completely honest when I tell you that practice was over and everyone was just sitting around and talking. It was as if everyone likes each other or something?? But seriously, a choir that practices together, stays together!!

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Start Something That Matters

When talking about INSPIRE people often ask me HOW Michael & I got started or WHY we got started.  I could ramble on about us and the hows and the whys but awhile back I found this inspiring video while doing research on Blake Mycoskie’s non-profit, “TOMS”. It pretty much sums up the WHY.
“…What they’re missing is me. What they’re missing is you.  What the world is missing is what you have always longed to do.”  

Inspiring, right?  I went and bought Blake’s book, “Start Something That Matters,” and I read it in one sitting. It is full of inspiration and fabulous ideas. A must read!

Sometimes it is hard when we put in so much of our hearts into INSPIRE and other people drop out or don’t show up or can’t seem to really dig in. Sometimes the last thing I want to do is stand up in front of people and lead them in music. Sometimes I feel very insecure about myself and what I have to offer. But, then I feel the power of music and service change my heart.

I get a glimpse of someone who came to our fireside and felt love for the first time in a long time.I look out into the audience and  can see what it looks like on someone’s face to feel hope again. I listen as a woman, w/ tears in her eyes, thanks INSPIRE  because we spent the day clearing trails—and asked for nothing—in a state where we don’t even live. I come to choir practice with my head down and my heart burdened and I can’t leave rehearsal w/o being filled with the spirit and renewed strength. These experiences just scratch the surface of the power of starting something that matters!

Our beginnings were small and riddled with difficulty but we were driven, passionate, hard workers, who longed for a day when our work and passion would spill out of the hearts of a mighty choir. I thank God every day for INSPIRE and the affect it has on my life and most importantly on my heart.