My friend Rick said some powerful things about grief in class today. More on that another day.
My church family gave over $161,000 for our special mission offering. More on that in a few lines.
Rich Little, a visiting preacher, spoke some powerful words about the power of God to use people. More on that another day too.
Here’s the power of God story for today. I may have shared some of this before – too tired to go back and look right now. Anyhoo…
Several months ago a teenage boy asked me how we came up with our budget for Missions Sunday. Normally it’s around $25-30,000 because that’s what we have “felt” like we could muster and be “successful”. (Notice the words in parenthesis? Those are human concepts.) The teenager asked me why we didn’t set it at $100,000 and see what happened. I didn’t say much at the time but the question wouldn’t leave my mind. He later told me he had heard the question from another adult in a youth class but the question didn’t leave him either. The question and the amount stayed with me until the Sunday when we were setting our missions contribution goal and I told our committee the story and the question. Guess what? We set our goal at $100,000. We have prayed and we have answered questions and we have responded that we couldn’t reach that amount with anything we could reason, it would be a God-thing.
On a weekend where we had seen the first good rain in a long, long time, water wasn’t the only thing that poured down from the heavens. The Spirit of God was at work and our congregation gave $161,000 – over 3 times what we’ve ever given on Missions Sunday and well over 10 times our normal weekly contribution.
I told the teenager and I told members of our youth group that they will never know the power they have to affect generations with the Gospel of Christ. The boy hearing the question and asking the question turned a thought into real dollars and lots of them that will be used to take the Good News around the world and to possibly affect members of families for time eternal. A simple question.
God takes a simple question asked with good intentions and turns it into something no one was prepared for. I stood in a room of men, many with tears in their eyes, as they looked at the numbers on the adding machine because God uses us when we might not expect, might not even know it. It sure makes me want to be open and ready for whatever God has in store because it’s something greater than I’ll come up with on my own.
Grace and peace to you.