Central Texas Food Bank — 3/12

Day 2 down, 3 to go! Today, we actually got to work onsite in the kitchen. We got to the facility a little early, so we checked in and waited until our shift started at 9:00. Soon enough, the time came and we were led back into the kitchen, where we donned hair nets, washed our hands, and divided up into teams, so we could get to work. Some washed plates and knives. Some peeled and chopped up carrots. Some cut up beets or sliced pepperoni for pizza (don’t worry, no beets were used in the making of the pizza). Some were brave (or crazy) enough to go into the 34° freezer to get meals ready for transport, and my dad and I had the task of taking utensil bags (filled with a paper napkin, straw, and plastic spork) and putting 25 each into bigger bags for distribution with meals. Also, 6th graders from HP were also there today. While I’m not sure what they were doing, they seemed to be doing it well! From our discussion as a group after coming back to the Quarries, it seemed like everyone really enjoyed working today! We were a power team, giving new meaning to the phrase divided and conquer. While I don’t have exact numbers, we estimate about a gazillion carrots and beets peeled, (props to Mr. Massie and Matthew on carrots and Dawson and Charlotte on beets), close to the same number of dishes washed, 3000 sporks sorted (I’ve never seen so many in my entire existence) and 100 trays of food assembled, with about 6 meals per tray (thanks to Mr. Carson, Coach Collins, and the rest of the “Frozen Few”). To put that into perspective, that’s 600 meals going to schools and childcare programs TODAY, and for some, it will be the only food they get tonight. Hundreds of  hungry young mouths will feel at least a bit of relief. Sure, all those tasks might seem menial or mundane in the moment, but when you take a step back and look at the impact it makes in the end, you can’t help but think that it was all worth it. As we got back to the Quarries for our debrief, we went around and shared a thought or takeaway we each thought was meaningful. For some, it was the realization that the work we did today would go straight to someone in need on the very same day, or the observation of how efficient each station was, and how the kitchen itself and its staff were like a well-oiled machine. Without them, we wouldn’t have had near the same amount of productivity we had today. For me, the best part of it all was talking to Travis. I wasn’t able to get a picture with him, but he was a volunteer who told my dad and I how to sort the sporks and stack them up, plus he was just a super nice, cool guy. While we were on break, he told us that he’s working at the food bank as part of an externship before he goes back to school, where he wants to get a degree in pastry-making and baking, and eventually open his own food truck. He also told us about one of his original recipes, how he first developed a passion for cooking, etc. All in all, if I were to guess God’s response to everything we did today, I think it would be best summed up in the words of Mr. Massie at our debrief this afternoon: “I’m proud of you.” We are God’s children, thus He’s always proud of us, but when we act in obedience to Him, like when we serve, His smile gets a lot bigger and he blesses us with a great outcome, like ending up with hundreds of trays made or getting to know Travis. When we listen to God, great things happen. If you would, pray for us, that we wouldn’t look at this week so much as a requirement but rather as a way to show gratitude and obedience to the God who loves us. Pray that we would be able to make more connections with people, like Travis, and ultimately spread His love in our actions and interactions. — Logan