Do you have an idea for a new mission project that's been eating at your heart? Something you know God is calling you to do and yet you aren't quite sure how to go about it? Something that you wonder what possible kind of a difference you, as an individual, could make?
As Christians, one of the things we are called to do is to change the world. And changing the world involves lifting up the lowly and caring for the least and the lost. This is one of the most important tasks of the Church and of individual Christians.
Just a few thoughts. "Mission" doesn't always mean that we are called to do nothing but "give, give, give." Of course, "giving" is a good thing. Those with more OUGHT to give in order to alleviate the suffering of those who have very little. And giving of our time and talent is also a good thing. But "giving of ourselves" might also mean finding ways to "partner" with those in need. It means walking with them through their despair. And it means finding ways to work with them and to help them build on their strengths.
One example of a mission partnership has to do with the coffee we serve in the Grace Café (and, of course, we can also purchase it for personal use). Through a partnership with a group from Lycoming College, a remote poverty-stricken village of El Naranjito in the Dominican Republic is becoming self-sufficient and the villagers are beginning to earn a living wage. Students from Lycoming take regular trips to El Naranjito, not to "do" the work for the community, but to work WITH the people of the village in order to help them develop ways to make their coffee crop into a sustainable resource for the village.
We are starting to plan for R.I.S.E. Sunday on October 7 - so mark your calendar. It will be a morning of worship and mission - an uplifting day for all of us, and a day that we pray will help us change the world in a small way. If you're willing to help with planning, with preparations, or with providing leadership on October 7, please speak with Lara Bolte.
So back to the question, "do you have an idea for a new mission project that's been eating at your heart?" Would it address a local need? Would it address a not-so-local need? Are you willing to put your own heart and soul into it? And are you interested in recruiting others to work with you? If you are, we'd love to help you explore ways for your church family to get involved. Please speak with me or speak with Lara Bolte who is the staff liaison for missions.