OUR CONNECTION MATTERS
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20 (NIV)
In late 2010 I went with a group to Barahona, Dominican Republic to work with the people who live in the batays and to take food to an orphanage in Haiti that had been badly affected by the earthquake. On Sunday we attended worship at a church in Barahona. After worship, we were visiting with folks in the church. I happened to be near the lady counting the offering. She motioned me over and showed me the offering plate. There were far more coins than bills. We had changed money when we entered the country, so I had an idea of how much the coins were worth in U.S. money. The collection plate held what looked like a very small offering to my preacher eyes. She pushed a small coin from the pile of coins closer to me. At the time, that coin was worth about four cents in our money. She said that the small coin was a lot of money for the person who had given it, but it wasn’t much compared to the needs of the church. She then pulled the coin back into the pile and said, “when it’s added to everything else the people give, it becomes enough to do the work God calls us to do.” She was truly a wise woman; wise in the ways of the Lord and wise in her knowledge of the thoughts of Americans who had come down to “help the poor” in her country.
Isn’t that the truth with everything related to the church? Nothing that any one individual can offer, no matter how large or small, is enough to do all the work the Lord calls us to do, but when added to the gifts of other Christians, it becomes enough. That applies to money, time, talents, and every other resource God has blessed us with to use in his service. I believe God planned it this way to help us understand that we must work together to accomplish his plans for his kingdom.
One person, one Sunday school class, one Bible study group, one mission trip, one youth group, one local church. We might be giving all we can give, and it might seem like a lot to us as one person, one class, one group, or one local church, but it won’t be enough to do all the work that God calls us to do. We aren’t just one person, or one group, or one local church. We are The United Methodist Church. We are one church, united, and stretching around the globe in mission and ministry to do kingdom work. We are connected to each other and together we can accomplish far more than we can individually. Let’s keep our eyes fixed on the One who gave us our commission to go into all the world and celebrate all that we accomplish for his sake when we remember our connection and work together.
Dr. Nita Crump serves as Director of Connectional Ministries. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.