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that sinking feelingThis weekend we were talking about the story of Moses being placed in a basket in the river to be kept safe.  We played a little game where each kid received a piece of foil and was instructed to make a boat out of it.  The boat had to float and the goal was to see how many pennies it could hold.  The oldest kid in the bunch made the winning boat and it was a great design (it beat my design by about 100 pennies).  The youngest kid in the bunch made a pretty good boat too, but it somehow got a hole in the bottom.  He tried to repair it, but after 31 pennies, it sunk.  Now, this was only about 20 less than mine and it was not the least amount of pennies in the group, but he did not win.

This guy is especially competitive and he walked away feeling defeated.  His cry of lament was, “My boat’s a piece of junk!”  I looked him in the eye and said, “but your boat saved 31 people.  That’s 31 people that would have died if they did not have your boat!”  As I said all of this, my mind immediately went to my ministry and our church.  We are not the largest church, and we never will be, but we are reaching people.  People are coming to church and being changed and that is spilling out into their daily lives.  Kids are learning some of the most basic principles of the Christian faith, but they are also being challenged to go deeper.

I don’t care how small your boat (church) is, if you are reaching people, it is important.  Sure, we all want to reach our entire community for Jesus, or we should, but it is a slow, painful, and tedious process.  Sometimes it may feel like you are sailing a piece of junk and that the boat across the way is way more important, but if you are doing what God is asking you to do, then you are doing the best thing you can be.

One final thought, I’m sure if this kid was given another chance, there are things he would change about his boat to make it better.  For starters, I bet he would make sure it didn’t get a hole in it.  Each week, we are given the chance to make our ministries better.  Every Sunday, we get another chance to fix the things that went wrong and to do it better.  I would be disappointed if that boy continually made the same boat and then complained that it only held the same amount of pennies.  In the same way, our goal is to take what we are doing and make it better, to find a way to have our church/ministry reach more people.

Serving Him together,

Pastor Jared