I met Julie at my turquoise table. It’s hard to wrap my head around the fact that we only met about six months ago! We talk all the time now and have become good friends. Julie has a passion for encouraging friends, neighbors, and children — she’s a mama of four — to serve in our community. She has a gift of noticing the needs of others. But, she doesn’t just notice, she organizes, rallies the troops, and comes up with incredible service projects that make a difference. Julie shared with me her desire to use her turquoise table as a place to gather for parties with a purpose. Isn’t that fantastic?
Thank you Julie for sharing your story!
One thing I’ve always been passionate about is sharing ideas about how we can serve our community. Sharing ideas is the easy part, but making them actually happen can be, quite honestly, challenging. Life with my husband and four young children with demanding sports schedules, homework, staggered pick up times, work schedules, is full! When I look at my calendar there simply isn’t room to invite others into my busy life. Even if I found the time, my house is a wreck! Laundry is piled up begging to be washed or put away, and there are always dishes piled up in the sink.
God knows me so well. He knew that I was hungry to know my neighbors, for community, and connection! He was also tired of my lame excuses so he nudged me to put a humble turquoise table right in my front yard. Since my turquoise table arrived, my neighbors and friends have gathered for several Parties with a Purpose. We’ve made shoes for kids in Uganda through a mission called Sole Hope. First a group of friends came over and we made soles for the shoes cutting up old jeans. It was such fun we couldn’t wait to make more. We made almost 100 pairs of shoes that will literally save kids’ lives across the globe. Our kindergarten Girl Scout troop even had the opportunity to gather and add their own sparkle by painting the soles that we were sending to Africa.
The party was so encouraging to those involved, we have another event planned benefiting Hand to Hold which serves mothers with babies in the NICU. My friends and neighbors are going to make jewelry and partner with a group of older ladies who have a wonderful prayer shawl ministry. We will present the moms with meaningful handmade gifts. More importantly we’ll pray for these mothers, their babies, and families around the turquoise table.
It is super easy to host a Party with a Purpose. I have chosen organizations that are important to me or my friends and neighbors. We have had success contacting the organizations to inquire about their needs and together we come up with a plan as to how to partner together. I keep the parties super simple, asking participants to either bring a donation to cover cost or to bring the materials needed. I love opportunities to learn something new so I try to keep that in mind while planning.
Hosting Parties with a Purpose at my turquoise table has opened up a world of opportunities for my friends and neighbors to get together, have fun, and serve our community. I’m so grateful that God provided a vehicle for us to gather and serve his kingdom through the turquoise table. Only God!