Let Me Tell You a Story…

Let Me Tell You a Story…

Let me tell you a story about how a cup of coffee can bring the dead back to life. You might be thinking that happens daily with your morning “cup of joe”, but I am talking about a roast of eternal significance here. At Underground Coffee it starts underground (logically) in the poverty stricken dirt of Honduras. Village farmers work, through coffee production, to restore the soil and offer an alternative to the devastating and prevalent life of violence.

After the beans are harvested, they are moved to Skagit Valley, Washington. Here, men leaving the underground life of gang violence, drugs and jail enter into a community and find employment roasting coffee.

And along the way, these villages and communities explore what it looks like to find wholeness in God rather than gangs or drugs. Underground says they are the Lazarus story of the coffee world, rolling away stones and calling forth that which was dead to life.

Or let me tell you the story about how a candle can light the way home. The women at Thistle Farms are survivors of abuse, addiction, prostitution and trafficking. Through the two-year residential program, they receive education, job skills training, and employment (where they make the best candles I’ve ever smelled as well as incredible lotions and bath products). They come to the program from dark places and are introduced to the Light of the World, Jesus.

Or what if I told you about the non-believing tea shop owner who was inspired by the work of a faith-based farm that works with adults with intellectual disabilities? This man, who doesn’t know the Lord, is now engaging with area churches to tell the story of lives changed through ComuniTea and Herbal Inclusion blends.

And these are just three stories from Festival of Hope. There are thousands more throughout the Gathering Place this weekend. We have invited vendors from all over the world and all different backgrounds because we believe Jesus cares about the poor. And we believe that Festival of Hope is an opportunity to share the love of Jesus with people as close as next door and as far India. Holiday shopping and tasty treats are an easy way to introduce friends and neighbors to our sweetheart church.

Doors open to the public Saturday at 10:00am. Come be a part of the story!

Julie Hawkins