Why Art for the Heart of INDIA?
November 12, 2019 | Kathy Smarrella
Why Art for the Heart of INDIA?
We are coming up very soon on what has become an annual Vineyard benefit event and I’ve been considering why we do it. Why so many volunteers devote hours to make it happen, and artists dedicate their time to create amazing works of art for this one night. It’s for this reason: Art for the Heart of Africa has been a transformational experience. For 130 children in South Sudan (and now Uganda) — who have been the beneficiaries of the generosity of our community over the last 10 years — have received education, medical care, shelter, clean water and electricity. And for us as a church and community, we have been able to flex our generosity muscles, to be providers for parentless children, and see that we should take nothing in our lives for granted, even basic needs.
Over the last three years, the Dreamland children have been living in a refugee camp in northern Uganda. At this point, the opportunity to expand in the camp is done. The buildings needed that can be built are complete. The children have clean water, beds to sleep in, and due to the generosity of all the folks who have come to Art for the Heart over the last 10 years, we have money to pay for their education and medical needs for this year and next, at least.
So, in this our 11th year, we are taking Art for the Heart in a new direction. We are committed to being a church who cares for widows and orphans, about whom God tells us we should care. James 1:22 and 27 says this, “But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says … Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress...”
Through a series of events and relationships, God brought us to an amazing ministry in India, a country where preaching Jesus is not popular and even can be dangerous. Christ for India is a ministry that has started literally thousands of Christian churches in their country; they have begun many orphanages and schools, and given women hope through teaching a skilled trade. Their dream is to plant a community center and church in the middle of the slums of New Delhi. The community center will offer education to children who don’t have access to it, provide skills training for adults who want to care for their families, and shine a light for Jesus in a place where others would prefer that His light be dimmed.
Proverbs 3:27 says, “Do not withhold good from those who deserve it when it’s in your power to help them.” There are countless tangible needs in New Delhi, and lives that can be changed in some amazing ways. With the momentum of 10 years of generosity at Art for the Heart, we believe that we can be used to make a tangible, Jesus-inspired difference in India.
Here’s what brings me joy and excitement in being a part of something like the Art for the Heart benefit auction. When God gives vision and a way to get there, our community jumps in with both feet. What Art for the Heart has taught me over the last 10 years — and now entering into the 11th — is this: God can do anything with a group of people who say “yes.” Who give with generous hearts. Who grab onto a vision and partner with Jesus-followers across the globe. Thank you, Vineyard family and friends, for diving in one more time and changing the world for Jesus.
Art for the Heart of India
Friday, November 15, 6:30–9pm
Semi-formal and adults only
16219 Jackson Road, Mishawaka, IN