For the past week, I have been volunteering at a church to help set up a huge Rummage Sale. This is the first time I have volunteered for a larger organization. In the past, I volunteered for family or friends, small church or work functions, or set up my own yard or garage or moving sales and handled everything myself, or with my deceased husband’s help.
This is an amazing experience with Spirit present every moment. I chose to work in the household area where the kitchen things were. I know this area intimately. People bring in donations in boxes, bags, or in their hands and set them outside the church’s events room. Then others sort through the items and bring them to the appropriate area on a cart. Those working in the area take them off the cart, set them on the floor or a table.
There is a tremendous amount of donated goods from clothes, shoes, children’s toys, fine crystal and china, holiday decorations, jewelry, bedding, table linens, bathroom items, furniture, appliances, sporting goods, books, office items to unusual things.
The volunteers start unpacking, sorting, and setting the items on the various tables. In the household area, there were tables for glasses, cups, plates, knick-knacks, microwaves, toasters, coffee and expresso makers, mixers, and so forth. It is a lot of work to get things set up just right. Some of the donated items had to be thrown away as they came broken, too well-used, or not sellable. Some of the items were so dirty they had to be washed, so the buyer could see what they were getting.
The women in household area shared laughs, opinions, memories, and touching moments. We bonded in a way that will keep us close after the sale is over. Such beautiful gifts of Spirit to give each other – smiles, praise, advice, humor.
We would unpack and put things on a specific table. Then the next day, they would be moved to a different table to better display them. Then once they were all displayed on the appropriate tables we would go back and price every item or groups of items. Appliances were checked to make certain they worked. If they didn’t they were thrown away. On Saturday, prices were cut in half to help sell them.
Every day at noon, the church made a delicious lunch for the volunteers. This was a lovely way to get to know each other better. It warmed my heart to listen to the various men and women talking about the sale, their lives, families, and so forth. It brought back memories of the church community I had as a child growing up. Everyone working together and having fun. I gave a silent thank you to Spirit for encouraging me to volunteer at this church and for the opportunity to make new friends.
During the sale on Friday and Saturday, the church volunteers barbequed hot dogs and hamburgers for sale for the public. Such a fun offering of love for the public.
The sale commenced for the church people on Wednesday evening from 6 to 9 pm, for the public on Thursday from 4 to 8 pm, Friday from 8 am to 4 pm, and Saturday from 8 am to 3 pm. From noon to 3 pm on Saturday is $2 a Bag time where people can put as much as they can get in the bag and the price is $2. After 3 pm, area nonprofits are invited in to take whatever they want that is left. If things remain after that, they will be donated to the Salvation Army or Goodwill or wherever else is appropriate.
Spirit in action through every step of this Rummage Sale – people releasing things no longer needed, someone getting them for a good price, church members working together in cooperation and love making sure the best was made ready for the community, charities receiving goods to assist yet more people, the church making money to support itself, and church volunteers bonding in work and love.
This is the heart of a church home to me, the heart of living the love that I have inside myself to help others, and the church. It would not make any difference where I volunteered whether at a church, work, in my neighborhood, for family or a friend, an organization, or at a store. This is Spirit in action expressed with love through me.
Reggie did his part while I was volunteering as he napped and protected the house and property. He is ready to love on me, play with me, and eat lunch or dinner with me when I return. Spirit in action with my beautiful little dog. Nancy and Reggie♥