"When my hopes and dreams are far from me and I'm runnin' out of faith...when the tears of pain and heartache are pouring down my face...Your love surrounds me in the eye of the storm..."
— "In the Eye of the Storm" by Ryan Stevenson
PRINCETON — Contemporary Christian music artist Ryan Stevenson's number 1 song "In the Eye of the Storm" could be the theme song for the mission of Isaiah 1:17 Project.
The not-for-profit organization launched by Marcia Lambert, a local teacher/foster-turned-adoptive mother last fall, is unfolding in a larger way than she imagined.
Isaiah 1:17 says "Learn to do good. Seek justice. Rebuke the ruthless, defend the fatherless..."
Lambert and likeminded volunteers in the community put hands and feet to the Bible verse, creating some sense of comfort and assurance in the eye of the storm for infants and youth who come into the foster care system.
When a new baby arrives in a household, it typically follows months of planning and baby shower gifts and anticipation.
When a child enters a home through the foster care system, it's often on short notice. A new place, new people, and nothing to call their own. Isaiah 1:17 Project provides "blessing bags" filled with new clothing and personal care items, something to call their own.
Lambert estimates about 30 children enter foster homes every month in Gibson County, and volunteers associated with the project work to provide a bag for each child. The organization has been distributing bags since late May, and hopes to eventually expand outside Gibson County's borders to meet a regional need.
The items donated or purchased are stored at the project's new headquarters in Haubstadt. Lambert said the volunteers hope to be ready for an open house next month.
Since launching, the project has raised funds through a variety of fundraisers and donations from individuals and businesses. She said this evening, the public can help raise funds simply by eating at Pizza Hut from 4-8 p.m. and presenting a flyer that designates 20 percent of the meal will be donated to Isaiah 1:17 Project.
The largest fundraiser to-date happens Sunday, Aug. 20, when Stevenson headlines the organization's "For His Children" concert at 5:30 p.m. at Princeton Community High School auditorium. Tickets are $15 and $25 for the event, which also features local Christian music bands The Change and Cochren & Co. Visit www.itickets.com (For His Children Concert) to reserve tickets.
The event is underwritten by Sully's, Bee Leave "N" Trucking, Patriot Motors, The Vineyard, Miller's Discount Grocery and Auction, Lamar Advertising, Ameriprise Financial, Heritage Custom Fabricating and Dairy Queen.
For more information about Isaiah 1:17 Project or the concert, visit the group's Facebook page: www.facebook.com/TheIsaiah117Project