By Conference Minister Diane Weible
This is a good time to bring back one of my favorite topics: Abundance.
If ever there was a time for us to be reminded (and to remind one another) about the importance of living from a place of abundance, this is it. God’s abundance does not wane, even if the store shelves are empty. The Spirit’s abundance is not diminished even if we are feeling pulled in so many directions (yes, that can happen even when we spend 24 hours inside our homes) that we fall exhausted into bed each night. When Jesus’ reminds us in Matthew chapter 6 about the dangers of worry, he is reminding us to look for abundance.
I was talking to one of our pastors yesterday and he reminded me that “this is a time of manna where we share what we have and we don’t take more than we need.” The beauty of abundance is that it gives us confidence to keep going when fear threatens to paralyze us. It gives us wisdom to see what we were afraid we might not see if we were separated from those we love. It gave us strength to figure out how to be Church when our buildings are shut and we are physically shut off from one another.
There are amazing stories of churches figuring out how to prepare meals for the San Francisco Night Ministry’s ministry to the homeless in San Francisco; of young people in churches reaching out to older members to find out what they need and to offer to go and get it for them; of churches and pastors connecting with one another to offer support and encouragement as we figure out how to BE Church in a different way; of members helping other members get set up for email or online platforms so we can SEE one another in a new and different way; of churches learning about food scarcity in their communities and going out to find the manna that is there and making sure that everyone has food.
This IS the time of manna. We offer hope and encouragement to one another because we know that God’s abundance cannot be diminished. As Christians, any time there is a crisis we find our way to Church, where we discover love and support and encouragement. We may not be physically carrying ourselves to a church building right now but we are still finding our way to Church. And, there, we see the abundance of manna and we learn how to share it in new and exciting ways.
[Daily online conversations (Monday through Saturday) at 10 a.m. with Conference staff (via Ring Central) will continue until such a time where they are not needed. Please join us to ask questions, share ideas, find support with one another. Click HERE for the link.]