Coming Together

“Many Hands Make Light Work.”

It sounds like, it seems like it’s in the Bible somewhere. A great proverb, perhaps, or the teaching of Jesus after telling a parable. The closest idea would be St. Paul’s image of the body: “To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. (1 Cor 12:7).

“Many Hands Make Light Work.” Though the ancient Greek idiom first made its English appearance in John Heywood’s book Proverbs, which was published in 1546, it is ever-new as we witness it’s truth before our eyes again and again.

Case in point — the pew shuffling game that’s been going on the last two Sundays. We have sung God’s blessing to one another, enjoyed one last reflective postlude moment, and then rolled up our sleeves and gotten to work. Both Sundays have clocked us in at under ten minutes to do a job that would take two unfortunate folks hours! And many of us whose backs could not handle the full job could take one or two turns, or help organize the bibles and hymnals. The point is that many hands make light work.

(One important reminder here…we need to come together this Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to put them back into place on our freshly cleaned carpets. And this column is dedicated to the three folks who did this hard work the first time around last Thursday…you know who you are!)

This is a most important ministry technique! We come together to accomplish what we would be unable to do on our own. It’s always such an encouragement and brings a palpable energy when we come together to give, to serve, to go, to eat, to worship, to support whatever it is that needs our attention.

And what needs our attention now is yet another opportunity to come together in a powerful way.

This week a letter requesting help came from pastor David Washington and Kingdom Covenant Church. We are one of a few churches that have partnered in their support as a church planted five years ago in Chicago’s Roseland community. After five years of budgeted support, Kingdom Covenant is now working on sustaining itself. But as many churches have experienced, Kingdom Covenant has lost some members and giving during the pandemic time of the last years. And to begin with, times are tough in the Roseland community, where the median household income is 37 thousand dollars (as opposed to Wilmette, where median household income is 162 thousand dollars, four times greater).

Pastor Washington is planning out of need to move to Bi-Vocational ministry.

How about we come together in the “many hands make light work” way and stop that from happening? What more exciting and worthwhile use of our dollars could there be? Instead of a “card shower” we undertake when someone is grieving the loss of a loved one, how about we have a “giving shower” and see how we can come alongside Kingdom Covenant in their critical gospel work?

Pastor Washington gives us the invitation: “We need individuals who are willing to become new financial partners to walk with us over the next twelve months as we plan for sustainability.”

A crazy idea and goal — could 50 of us go to http://www.kingdomchicago.org/give and get on that train? Imagine what an encouragement this could be, and how again in this case “many hands make light work.”

We’ll talk more about this on Sunday, when we gather to chew on Jesus’ latest parable:

Luke 12:13-21

Someone in the crowd said to him, ‘Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me.’ But he said to him, ‘Friend, who set me to be a judge or arbitrator over you?’ And he said to them, ‘Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.’ 

Then he told them a parable: ‘The land of a rich man produced abundantly. And he thought to himself, “What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?” Then he said, “I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.” But God said to him, “You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?” So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich towards God.’

———————

Let’s come together and give with a flourish to the work of God’s Kingdom and our sisters and brothers in need. Let’s go for fifty of us! You can participate in some way. If you will, just let me know you have, and I’ll keep a running tally to see how our challenge goes.

See you Sunday!

Peter Hawkinson

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