Conversation: Rick Cole and Dary Northrop
One Day to Feed
Rick Cole is senior pastor of Capital Christian Center in
Sacramento, Calif., and Dary Northrop is lead pastor of Timberline Church in
Fort Collins, Colo. Both, along with their congregations, have participated in
Convoy of Hope’s One Day to Feed the World offering in order to minister to
people who are impoverished and suffering. They recently spoke with Kelly
Bevill, an intern at the Pentecostal Evangel, about the church’s role in
helping the underserved and hurting, as well as how compassion ministries make
a difference in the lives of those who give.
evangel: Why did your churches partner with Convoy of Hope?
COLE: We’ve had a relationship with Hal and Dave Donaldson
and really appreciate what they do. We also understand God’s heart for reaching
the poor. Many passages in Proverbs relate to helping the poor and God’s plan
to bless those who do. That kind of ministry is a big part of His heart. God
wants people to reach out and touch those who are in difficult places. It’s a
biblical mandate, and we have found incredible blessings whenever we reach out.
NORTHROP: The One Day offering is one of the greatest ways
to expose people to widespread need and get them involved in giving. It’s equal
sacrifice, rather than equal giving. I love how Convoy of Hope multiplies every
dollar. We sent $125,000 for our One Day offering this year and were told that
is going to turn into a million pounds of food.
evangel: What impact has working with Convoy of Hope made on
NORTHROP: It’s given us an awareness of the needs of the
world, and it’s also allowed us the opportunity to participate in something
that we didn’t have to create. One local church can’t do the massive outreaches
that Convoy of Hope does.
COLE: When we come to Convoy of Hope and One Day to Feed the
World, everyone just embraces it. It’s on people’s hearts. They understand the
need of the people who can’t help themselves. Every year we have seen an
increase in the giving for One Day to Feed the World. It’s had a tremendous
impact where people feel the reward of it.
evangel: How do you think that working with Convoy of Hope
has expanded the worldview of your churches?
NORTHROP: We have a pretty big worldview. But I think the
emphasis on humanitarian need is a huge thing right now. People who won’t give
in other offerings will give to feed or clothe others.
COLE: Convoy of Hope helps us see what’s going on in places
we might never visit ourselves. They give us the pictures and the sights and
the sounds of these difficult places, so it opens the window to the world. They
do it in a tasteful way. It’s captivating and not something that is so graphic
that it can become repulsive. Instead, it’s compelling and appropriate.
evangel: What role should the church have in serving and
reaching the poor and suffering?
NORTHROP: We should lead the way. You make a mistake if you
give people a bag of groceries and send them on their way, because you also
need to reach out to them by asking if you can pray for them or if they need
financial counseling or career counseling or some other need met.
COLE: The church should be the primary source of reaching
the poor and suffering. When people see how much we care about them by how we
reach out to them, then they become more interested in our message. It opens
the door to faith when they see that we’re here to help people who are hurting.
We meet the physical need and it opens their hearts to their spiritual need.
The church should be the first people on the scene in every situation; that’s
evangel: What expectations should a church have of the
people they help?
COLE: We’re not going to give with any material expectation.
We give without strings attached. Our one hope is that they’ll come to faith,
that through our help there will be more people who enter God’s kingdom because
of how it touches their hearts. That would be my hope, that they would have a
soft heart toward faith.
NORTHROP: We don’t help people in a humanitarian way and
expect them to say a prayer with us. We offer to pray with them, but if they
respond that is something that the Holy Spirit has to do in their hearts. I
have found that it doesn’t work very well when you tie, “We’ll give you a bag
of groceries if you say this prayer” — it really defeats the purpose. I
think if you genuinely care about the person, because God loves them and God
cares about them, that it changes your whole mind-set, even how you pray for
and with them.
evangel: How has helping others impacted you?
COLE: It helps me stay grounded and appreciate the things we
have and to not take for granted the blessings we have. It helps me to see a
more balanced view of what we’re here for. It helps me stay more balanced in
who I’m supposed to be and what I’m supposed to do.
NORTHROP: It’s just humbling to see the blessings that I
live with in my life. And that causes me to feel a greater responsibility to
those who don’t have the opportunities that I’ve had.
COLE: God’s favor rests upon those who help hurting people.
Our compassion toward others invites His favor in our lives. That’s one of the
real wonders and blessings in participating.
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