Prayer doesn’t come easy for me. I tend to be a doer. Even after becoming a pastor, I am more about doing things for the church. I didn’t have an active prayer life. I read the Bible and other spiritual books, but I spent little time in prayer. There always seemed to be something else to do.
Then came the invite to join a small group. Not going to lie, I put it off for a year. If you’re still reading this, take my advice and don’t wait as long as I did. I joined a group of people each Sunday and quickly realized they had taken Quinn and I in as one of their own. We became family. God’s timing is so, so good.
So, I grabbed a snow shovel and started digging and digging and digging some more until I was standing over the shovel, panting, out of breath.
Did I mention there were eighteen inches of snow?
I finally managed to clear a small path and took a break. A few minutes later, I tried again, made more progress and took another break. At this rate, I would be shoveling snow until July.
Then, there was a knock on my door.
While on deck, holding desperately to anything solid, John noticed several families near the stern serenely singing hymns. He couldn’t believe it! How could they conduct worship and sing in the midst of such a terrible storm? Why weren’t they more frightened? John marveled at their faith and vowed to learn more.
Over the past few weeks, I challenged our congregation to take $10 and either multiply it and donate it to our Potter’s House mission for the homeless or use it to help someone else in a creative way. Here are two interesting responses to provide encouragement and a touch of creativity as we start a new year.
These priests left their comfortable homes and traveled for weeks to a strange land, bearing expensive gifts. Upon seeing Jesus, they knelt before him filled with joy. Zoroastrian Priests get it when Jewish religious leaders looking for their Messiah never recognized God’s sign.
Money has a dark side and a light side. The dark side involves greed and poor management which leads to excessive debt or extensive hoarding. The money we possess can bring out our worst traits. Churches are not immune. Sometimes the biggest arguments and disagreements come when churches are deciding how to spend a surplus or large gifts.