Friday, January 4, 2013

What Is Mine, Is Yours.

About a month ago, I was asked to share a story during our church service about how I've experienced loving mercy. It was fun to be up front again and it was an honor to share using the following verse as my guide.

Micah 6:8
“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”

Loving Mercy

For those of you who aren’t familiar with my story, my name is Lindsay Furber and I became a member of this church six years ago when I was hired to run the middle school youth program.  However, the joke around our house is that I worked at the church for four years, but most people still just know me as “Jack’s mom.” I suppose that’s the problem with having one of the most adorable two-year-olds in the PNW… Not that I’m biased.

I want to share one of my favorite volunteer opportunities. Community Christmas is just around the corner and it is a wonderful way to experience God’s loving mercy. For those of you who aren’t familiar with this event, our church teams up with the Families Unlimited Network to find families who could use a little help during the holidays. Then, they provide a Christmas gift for each child and a holiday meal for the whole family. 

I love everything about this event. I love that the parents get to look around the room & “shop” for their child’s gift. I love that, meanwhile, the children are scurried off to go enjoy holiday games & festive treats. I love that so many people in our church come together to walk with those in our community.

For the past few years, I have suffered for Jesus by being one of the holiday shoppers for Community Christmas... It’s a hard job, but somebody has to do it! So, a couple days before the big event, I go shopping for any presents that are still needed using donations from members in our church. My friend was recently teasing me how this is the perfect job for me because I love finding good deals. And essentially, I get handed money to go shopping for a couple hours. It’s every woman’s dream!

But even more fun than that, is walking alongside each family and experiencing the humility and joy. I remember one father had his oldest daughter come with him for the “shopping” because he needed help picking out the gifts for each child. This meant that the 17-year-old ended up helping choose her own gift. The image of this young woman’s indescribable joy as she clutched a new, baby blue bathrobe is forever burned into my brain. How many of us would be satisfied with a single gift of a bathrobe this Christmas?

Now, let me remind you that I have a toddler at home and we have been working on removing the word, “mine” from his vocabulary. In a toddler’s mind, what’s mine is mine. What’s yours in mine. What belongs to the dog is mine... And, this is often followed with a tyrannical fit…

Community Christmas is an incredible opportunity to experience Christ’s love and mercy by 
being the hands & feet of Christ. It reminds me of Harlan’s message last week. What’s mine, is yours. The true essence of understanding God’s loving mercy is knowing that what is mine, is yours.

God’s perspective is so far from that of my two-year-old. What’s mine is yours. My Son is yours. Praise God in heaven that we can learn what it looks like to love mercy from a Loving Father. I would encourage you to extend the hand of loving mercy by sharing the blessings our Heavenly Father has showered upon us this holiday season.

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