Randy's Story of Serving

"The LORD God placed the man (Adam) in the Garden of Eden to tend and watch over it" (Genesis 2:15, NLT).

Gardening is the oldest profession known to man. It takes patience, dedication and support. Our ancestors were given the responsibility of tending God's special garden as a way to worship God and enjoy creation.  At Lakeside, we hope to inspire passion for serving God through our garden ministry.

"Out of my love for gardening, Christian fellowship and the possibility of helping others, I asked the church leadership for their blessing," said Randy Mathews regarding the creation of a new ministry at Lakeside.

Now only a few months into its production, the garden is filled with produce, including: potatoes, sweet corn, tomatoes, green beans, cabbage, cucumbers, watermelon, pumpkins, butternut squash and more.

The garden is flourishing due to the dedication of Lakeside members and volunteers who  generously donate their time, knowledge and funds to maintain and harvest the grounds.

"We have had a mix of about twenty families," said Randy. "Having a leadership team and some energetic families, we have had a good start."

The ministry was created with the mission to provide core training that will enable families to help themselves and others, starting with those in need at our church.

"Gardening is a skill that parents can pass on to their children. It promotes service to Christ and His church. It is an avenue that leads gardeners to have pride in their service and a wider vision of service possibilities," said Randy.

Lakeside has donated produce to the Central Illinois Food Bank and the Inner City Mission. The ministry hopes to expand their contributions as more produce becomes available.

"So two good things will result from this ministry of giving—the needs of the believers in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanks to God" (2 Corinthians 9:12, NLT).

As the garden blossoms, the time required for maintenance and harvesting will increase to 20-30 hours weekly. We encourage and welcome new faces and families to come out and lend a hand. If you are interested in volunteering for the garden ministry, please email Randy Mathews at randelmathews@comcast.net.  

We thank each and every person who is involved in making the garden possible and for creating a ministry of giving at Lakeside Christian Church.