Spring Break Volunteers Demonstrate Faith

Spring breakers have invaded Long Beach. But you won't find these students on the beach or in the bars.

They're picking up paint brushes, shovels and rakes for mission work.

These college students are using their break, to live out their faith.

"All right. What have we got here fellas? We got a bunch of roots," said Troy McNatt, as he directed an outdoor crew.

McNatt studies mechanical engineering at Tennessee Tech. But his specialty this moment is landscaping. Helping plant Sandy Spradlin's backyard is an opportunity to demonstrate his faith with action.

"Like a tree is still a tree even if it's dead. But it's not what a tree was intended to be. So, just like that our faith has to have action and a life behind it. Getting dirty for Jesus to make that faith solid," he explained.

"I am very grateful. Very helpful. Yes. Happy, happy story," said Sandy Spradlin, as she watched the young volunteers beautify her yard.

"They spend their spring break doing odd jobs and everything. And for people who have trouble doing it themselves. It is a god send," said Spradlin.

"This is not a pretty door," said Angela Combs, as she directed a painting crew just down the street from the landscape detail.

For many of the painters, this is their first spring break mission trip.

"A lot of people on spring break will get up and go down to the beach and hang out and party and stuff. We're just like, I think we should go down here and serve. Use this time for something useful,' said Daniel Smithson.

Angela Combs says the work is actually fun.

"It's not every day you get a whole week to just go paint people's houses and mulch and the stuff your parents really ask you to do, and you hate, that you actually enjoy doing for other people,"
Combs said.

The students will spend the week serving others, sharing their faith and having fun in the process.

The Cleveland Avenue Church of Christ sponsors the spring break mission trip. The visiting students are staying with several host families.

They will take some time for fun after a week of work. They're planning a visit to New Orleans on Friday.