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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Oil For a Change

If you live in Jackson and know single moms in the area or you are a single mom yourself, this might make your day . . .

Imagine a line of cars outside of a local Auto Care business full of single moms and their kids waiting to get their oil changed, fluids checked, some hot dogs and drinks, and a car wash--ALL FOR FREE. This weekend!

Oil For a Change is a cooperative effort between Westwinds and Choice
Auto Sales and Service of Jackson
. This year, on May 21st and September 10th, Oil For a Change will give away free food, car washes, and oil changes to over 300 single moms (165 each date).

Last summer, Ben Redmond and I did a message series entitled “Jesus Jackson” where we discussed how Jesus would respond to issues specific to Jackson and the people who live here—unemployment, underemployment, Jackson’s view of itself, opportunities to heal the community, the young and old, transplants and native Jacksonians, our work ethic, hope for the city, etc. We asked, “What would Jesus care about in Jackson? What would compel him? What would make him sad? What would he celebrate?”

I spoke one particular Sunday and mentioned a list of dreams I had for the city while encouraging others to dream in the same way letting people know “You can’t separate who you are from where you live,” and “God wants to use what you do and who you are to impact this place in a way that only you can.”

After hearing the list of dreams and being encouraged to imagine ways individuals could help Jackson, Carmela Lazarus, a local business owner and Allegiance Health employee, approached me with an idea. She heard me mention in a long list of dreams an idea to change the oil in the cars of single mothers as a display of hope and healing for our town.

Carmela (whose name has an accent on the first syllable) said, “My husband Chuck and I own a business where we service cars. I think we could actually do something like this.”

And so, the idea for Oil for a Change was born.

You can listen to one of the interviews we did on local radio station 89.3 The Message below.

Oil For a Change 89.3 Interview

On Christmas Eve, Westwinds Church traditionally gives an offering to something in the community that offers hope. We told the story of our dream for Oil For a Change and on December 24, 2010, Westwinds raised enough money to change the oil in the cars of over 300 single mothers.

Tickets for oil changes are available in advance at Westwinds, Choice Auto Sales and Service, or the day of the event at Choice Auto Sales and Service. While we don’t want to turn anyone away, supplies are limited to 165 each weekend. Your best bet is to get advance tickets or show up early.

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