A Little Farther

May 18, 2021

 

“When He had gone a little farther…He called them and they followed Him.” Mark 1:19-20

 

Occasionally, we just need to take small steps and go a little farther as He leads. On the back of a momentous 2020, here are some early highlights for 2021:

 

Communication – hopefully, you have noticed our new LOGO. The full package was kindly donated by KM Digital, and our brand new WEBSITE launched last week. All TOL material will then be updated to reflect our new look. Great feedback so far and we are confident that the new website will be much easier to navigate.

 

Fundraising – 2021 is our biggest budget year by far. To keep pace with our growth, the monthly fundraising target for Jan-March 2021 was $125k every month. To put this in perspective, the highest ever amount raised in the past during Jan-March was $78k. Guess what, God delivered thanks to your generosity! The average amount raised during Jan-March 2021 was $129k. February alone saw donations at 211% higher than 2020. Quite amazing!

 

Leadership – filling leadership roles across our staff, Branch Director and Ministry Leader levels is absolutely critical to success. We have seen some amazing new people join our team during the year so far:

  • Purcellville – a Relief Branch Director (Cindy), Shelter Branch Director (Vicky) and Housing Ministry Leader (Pamela) appointed.
  • Leesburg – a new SimplyBe Coffee Shop Manager (Terry) and new Food Pantry Manager (Judah) appointed. Terry and Judah replace 2 incredible Kingdom servants, Beth and Brenda, who are moving on to pastures new.
  • Sterling – a new Regional Coordinator (Evelyn), Food Branch Director (another Cindy!) and Food Pantry Manager (Stephanie) appointed.

 

To better orient our growing team into Tree of Life, we have also worked hard on establishing a brand new Onboarding Process for all leadership which includes establishing a personal Training Plan when new leaders join the journey.

 

Ministry – the year so far has been interesting. Not unlike other local nonprofits, we have seen the demand for food deliveries and financial relief payments slow down. That has enabled us to pour energy into planning and kick starting some much-needed ministry review in other areas that were curtailed during Covid. For example:

  • Purcellville – lots of Relief Branch activity in the areas of special needs (extending the age range for Still Waters) and seniors (re-launching Bible Study groups). The Clothing Closet is seeing lots of Spring activity and we have started a renovation of our 5 town apartments for women and children.
  • Leesburg – collaboration across both Purcellville and Leesburg Healthcare Branches to see a dental clinic event held during 2021. Huge energy has also been poured into expanding the Food Pantry into a larger space given the increased demand. A full review of Lifeskills ministries is also heavily underway.
  • Sterling – a new lease has been signed for a Sterling Park location. 1st VIP held and planning now underway to launch Ministries. Some great dialogue ongoing with lots of Sterling and Ashburn churches. The first big event is a Food Drive on June 5th to help “fill the pantry.”

 

Spiritual Growth – our Chaplain is forging ahead with new teams to help guide spiritual growth across the needy population whom we serve.

 

“When He had gone a little farther…He called them and they followed Him.” As a result of going a little farther, the Apostle John followed Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. John was one of Jesus’ closest followers, author of one gospel, three letters and the Revelation of Jesus Christ Himself. Arguably, he wrote the most far-reaching sentence in the whole of Scripture – John 3:16. By all accounts, Jesus going a little farther paid huge dividends. Thank you for going a little farther with our Tree of Life family.

 

Blessings,

Paul Smith

Chief Executive Officer