serve |səːv| verb [ with obj. ]1 perform duties or services for (another person or an organization) • provide (an area or group of people) with a product or service: Find a way to serve your city.
“The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.”
– Albert Schweitzer
I had the incredible privilege of being able to feed homeless individuals in my city this week through SoupMobile, and can hardly describe how inspiring this experience was to me.
SoupMobile is a faith-based, non-profit charity designed to feed and shelter the homeless in Dallas, Texas–and has been doing just that since it was founded in 2003.
As I was speaking with the founder, David Timothy, (lovingly referred to as, “the Soup Man” by those he serves), he shared his heart and went on and on about how faithful God has been in this journey. In their first year, they served 5,000 meals to the hungry, and now they are up to 200,000 meals every year!
David focuses on two main things every day of his life: bringing the love of Christ to people and his mission to feed the homeless. He is doing both of those things–well.
David said bringing the love of Christ to the homeless is so important because they are accustomed to being pushed aside. They don’t get hugs, smiles or a friendly greeting very often. David likes to talk to them like the regular people they are, making them feel their value and worth. He will ask them, “Where were you born?” or “How long have you been in Dallas?” He believes that when he shares love with people, that love will stay with them just like God’s love stays with us.
David’s love for people is what fueled him to begin a homeless ministry over a decade ago with the first ever mobile soup kitchen, taking the food to areas where the homeless congregate.
He gives all glory to God, and thanks Him daily for the people that work alongside of him to help this ministry continue growing and blessing more and more homeless individuals in our city.
Harvor Davis is one of those devoted people. I enjoyed meeting Mr. Harvor who is the Warehouse Manager at SoupMobile, and never ever takes a day off. He is so passionate and says he never wants to take a day off because the homeless need to eat every single day. Harvor, along with the 7 employees that run SoupMobile, serve the homeless every day alongside volunteers who give their time to serve others.
Food for the Homeless
With thousands of volunteers, SoupMobile takes 10-20 people to be part of their daily feeding mission Monday-Friday, year-round, rain or shine.
David loves to encourage his volunteers to smile and have fun while being a part of such a great cause. He said, “These people are trying to get the breakfast they missed and the dinner they won’t have. Give them extra, allow them to take more. Smile, and have fun getting to know them. The impact you make will go way beyond the lunch hour.”
The homeless are served through a buffet-style lunch line. Volunteers are encouraged to give extra food away, like chips, snacks and power bars, so they’ll have food to eat when they leave.
Shelter for the Homeless
There are over 10,000 homeless individuals living in Dallas, and only 2,000 shelter beds. The Shelter Program at SoupMobile was designed with a series of group homes as supportive housing and emergency housing for short-term stays. The long-term housing was created to take homeless men, women and families off the streets, put a roof over their head, help them get jobs, and eventually help them to become working, productive members of society.
Christmas for the Homeless: “Celebrate Jesus”
Each Christmas, SoupMobile invites 500 homeless men, women and children to stay at the beautiful Dallas, Omni Hotel. Each year, along with the Dallas Mayor, 2500 volunteers come to help and serve at the greatest serving opportunity of their lives. They welcome the honored guests with a red carpet, a live band and a cheering crowd. They receive gifts and get to wake up in a warm bed. I would love to be part of this!
Christ for the Homeless
David said, “When Jesus said to, ‘feed my sheep’ in John 21:16, he meant more than just food. He meant love, caring and compassion. The food we give feeds their bodies, but the love of Jesus feeds their souls.”
That’s why David and the SoupMobile team started a non-denominational church for the homeless. David is the pastor and this is his home church, designed to be a sanctuary and place of restoration, hope and healing for those who have lost their way.
Every Sunday at 11am, SoupMobile Church 2423 S. Good Latimer, Dallas, Texas 75215 is filled to capacity with homeless church members. This is a place where they not only discover the love of Jesus for themselves, but they can find job placement, counselling, housing guidance, food and clothing.
SoupMobile Ladies Tea Time at the Ritz
Mark your calendars! Next month, I will be speaking for the SoupMobile Ladies Tea on December 5th at 12:30pm at the Ritz Carlton. The Ritz organizes this event each year, 100% pro-bono with no cost to the charity or its guests.
SoupMobile is a non-profit organization that relies on financial help from other people to fulfil their mission to serve, shelter and provide for the homeless within our community. I would love for you to attend this event with me, and to get involved in serving the homeless in your own community.
I wrote this blog to share this ministry with everyone and to encourage my friends to make small donation or become a Dream Team Member (only $5 a month!). Whether you give of your time or your treasure, even the smallest gift can make a real difference in the lives of the homeless!
To find out more information on how you can get involved, visit: Soupmobile.org
Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile!
“Jesus repeated the question, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” “Yes, Lord,” Peter said, “you know I love you.” “Then feed my sheep,” Jesus said. John 21:16