We held a “Giving Carnival” between worship services yesterday. This was our way of launching the annual giving campaign, “Build Us Up,” to support the on-going ministry of this church. For those able to attend it was a time that layered deeper conversations around how God is calling us to respond to God’s vision for the world with a bit of fun and fellowship. Participants used their gifts to knock down the big problems we face, smash the structures of sin, share love both near and far, and to stand up for what is right, among other things.
As we worked our way through the variety of activities, attendees also pondered how they might answer a series of questions. Here are a few of them for us to consider again today:
- How can we love our neighbors who aren’t like us?
- What things would you say keep us separated from one another & God?
- What is the hardest thing about being a child of God?
- What is one thing that you could stand up for today?
- What is something that you’ve gotten better at through practice?
- What are the big problems God is calling us to help solve?
- What are the activities that bring you joy?
Our morning was all about the gifts that God has blessed us with: our time, our talents & our treasures. God also gives us the freedom to use our gifts however we want. And God has a vision for a world where all people can thrive and all might know that they are loved. This is God’s mission for the church. And God invites us to use our gifts to make this vision a reality.
As participants “invested” their time, talents, or treasure while engaging each carnival activity, their investments were returned back to them in greater measure. Ultimately, these ever-expanding resources helped to create something altogether new and in concert with all those who joined in this mission. The creation, on the outside, looked like a church building. But this was just a physical manifestation of a less tangible reality. The community of faith is realized through the work it shares, in ministry together, sharing God’s love with the world.
May God’s peace find you this day. -Pastor Peter
Let us pray…
Generous God, you pour out your blessings to us in ever-increasing measure. Help us to continue uncovering new ways to reinvest what you have given us so that all might come to know the transformative power of your love. Amen.