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Faith Story

Making Plenty With Little - The Austin Group

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Let me tell you about a group of people who touch the hearts of the lonely and feed the bellies of the hungry.

This group of amazingly beautiful people are members of Annunciation who gather on the first Thursday of the month to prepare and serve dinner to approximately 400 men, women, and children who have found themselves homeless in the Dallas area.Not only does the Austin Group feed the people who are starving, they are smiling with the people who've been frowning. Laughing with people who've been crying. Focusing on the people who've been hiding. Loving the people who've been hurting. 

From the moment the Annunciation's Austin Group arrives, the guests at the Austin Street Center forget about life's challenges and embrace the Austin Group's love. The Austin Group looks past these people's current life situations and builds them up, makes conversation with them and establishes relationships with them. 

Like Jesus, The Austin Group is able to take seven loaves of bread and a couple of small fish and feed and satisfy everyone.

Having the opportunity to serve the community at the Austin Street Center and along side the Austin Group, I experienced first hand the power of God's love and the impacts the Austin Group has on people. The day I served was a day I will never forget. The Austin Group was the first group to ever serve a hot Thanksgiving meal to the guests at the Austin Street Center this year. Every thirty minutes the crowed erupted with thunderous applause to thank the Annunciation for being able to serve them a delicious hot dinner. At one point, I thought we were going to run out of food, but just like the Jesus fish and bread story, we were able to feed everyone and then some. 

Working along side the Austin Group is an overwhelming amount of joy that needs to be experienced. There is a joyous sensation felt when you serve others. As I tell you about this group, I am frustrated because the words I write cannot explain how it feels. This is not a story that should just be shared, this is a life that needs to be lived. 

This experience and group depict the true meaning of Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is about putting aside differences and coming together as one.

This Thanksgiving, as you circle around the dinner table with your family, remember that love goes beyond family members. God's love is to be shown to everyone. Remember to love thy neighbor as thy self. Remember to be thankful for what you have and then be willing to share your blessings with others.

Just like the Austin Group, with faith in God, you can make plenty with little. Have a happy Thanksgiving.

Feeding of the Four Thousand

29 Jesus left there and went along the Sea of Galilee. Then he went up on a mountainside and sat down. 30 Great crowds came to him, bringing the lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute and many others, and laid them at his feet; and he healed them. 31 The people were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled made well, the lame walking and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel.

32 Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. I do not want to send them away hungry, or they may collapse on the way.”

33 His disciples answered, “Where could we get enough bread in this remote place to feed such a crowd?”

34 “How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked.

“Seven,” they replied, “and a few small fish.”

35 He told the crowd to sit down on the ground. 36 Then he took the seven loaves and the fish, and when he had given thanks, he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and they in turn to the people. 37 They all ate and were satisfied. Afterward the disciples picked up seven basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 38 The number of those who ate was four thousand men, besides women and children. 39 After Jesus had sent the crowd away, he got into the boat and went to the vicinity of Magadan.

Tags: annunciation, community, faith, love, service, thanksgiving, austin street center, austin group