I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with you because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now....
This Sunday, May 17th, is our day of recognition for volunteers at church. It felt both odd and very right that while preparing small tokens of appreciation for my volunteers this Sunday, a couple of volunteers helped me complete my plans. Those whom the gift was for, helped me prepare the gift.
A younger me would have felt guilty about this, or maybe inadequate. But now I'm just grateful that I am part of a community bigger than myself. I am grateful that even my expressions of thanks are supplemented by those who invite and contribute to the appreciation. Paul knows this. Gospel partnership drips down into every crevice of our lives from sharing Jesus with our words to encouraging one another when we're likely to doubt or give up altogether. Who are the people in your life that every time you think of them conjure up a wellspring of thanks and goodness in you? People who have shared in life with you in the simple and complicated. People who have poured over ministry with you, lived out faith next to you, shepherded your kid alongside you, picked up the pieces during hard times for you.
Even Jesus, God himself, knew and empowered the significance of partnership and friendship. God has always chose to be in relationship with and work alongside humans, even on our worst days. So who am I to go at life alone? I welcome the help in tangible and intangible gifts that cross my path each day.
So here's to the volunteers, more accurately the partners and friends, who aid my own faith and ministry. Those that believe in me and God's leadership through me, and also fill in all the gaps and areas of giftedness that I lack. We share a big love, and I am honored to join it and receive it.