Monday, June 29, 2009

Small beginnings

Do not despise these small beginnings,
for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin…
Zechariah 4:10 (New Living Translation)

A few months ago, I casually mentioned to a deacon that we ought to open the church gym on Sunday afternoons for volleyball. I believed it would help build community among our younger members. His eyes lit up. “Let’s start right away.”

“Sure,” I said, meaning that we would set a date and do some promotion. He meant that Sunday. He purchased a volleyball got the keys to the gym and invited some people.

Our first day wasn’t that great; four people showed up (two were staff), we couldn’t find the net and there was strange odor in the gym (turned out to be gas). We pretended that there was a net and had a good time.

The following Sunday we had a net and two more people. A couple of months later, the gym is full. There are youth, children, young adults, and adults that were once young. People are rotating in and out and some are just content to watch and cheer (and laugh).

Today we launched a free lunch program to feed the children of our community and only nine kids lined up. The program is in response to the fact that Texas leads the nation in child hunger. The Baptist Standard recently reported that 22% of Texans under 18 are food insecure. This means that when food is prepared, it is usually of poor quality or an unbalanced diet leading to malnutrition and health problems.

Nine children seem hardly worth the effort but there are nine less hungry children. It also illustrates the reality only 7% of eligible children who were eligible received free summer lunches last year.

Nine is three more than we had for volleyball and tomorrow there will be more. Soon we will reach our goal of thirty and might surpass it.

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