#ExtravagantGenerosity - Caught in the Act
"Go up to the mountains, bring wood and rebuild the temple,
that I may be pleased with it and be glorified," says the LORD.
As Associate Pastor for Youth, I spend the majority of my time with youth and their families, and the extravagant generosity I witness here at JCPC falls into two categories: adults who are generous with their time, talents, and treasures to the youth ministry and as an example to them... and the youth themselves, learning from these examples and living into God's call for their lives. It's an example of the first I'd like to share with you today.
It's exciting to serve people who are generous and hardworking and for us to serve alongside each other. One such person who has worked night and day to give the youth a space and welcoming place to gather, to learn, and to fellowship, is Laura Freeman. I've watched her show up with every free hour she has to decorate, to put her sweat, her ingenuity, and her unique ability to carve raw space into holy space in the new building and our gathering space. When Laura recently asked me what we should put at the top of our new chalkboard wall in the youth room, I immediately thought of a phrase from the ordination vows we often use in the Presbyterian Church. "Will you serve God's people with energy, imagination, and love?"
Laura has. And in that spirit, those words will be put over this blank black wall where each week, the youth will be able to write, draw, and respond with, "Energy, Imagination, & Love." I'm inspired by the way so many people here at JCPC have given money, support, and encouragement to the efforts of the creative and hardworking people who are not just building, painting, and decorating, but making space to gather for holy moments, to learn, to grow, to invite, and to share with those who will join us, who God will lead us to and call to be among us. I am grateful to Laura and those who give her the support and tools to envision and make a reality of a place where our youth will gather and be sent out to serve others. When we rebuild places to a new purpose where God will be glorified, we please God.
Prayer for Today
Lord, help me to be generous with my talents. Help me to choose the things that serve those who need me most. When I become discouraged, help me to offer my gifts in love to preparing places where you will be glorified. Amen.