Archive for November 10, 2008

Safe First

November 10, 2008

Just down the road from the church office a new bank is going up.  (Surprise right?  Another bank in a small town.  I think that makes 874 banks in Cartersville.)  I pass by this construction site every day and have been observing the progress.

What was easily noticeable about this bank build was what was first constructed.  Immediately after the foundation was poured and pipes were in place…before you saw the first piece of wood on site…a massive amount of concrete was poured.  I mean a lot of concrete.  Layers.  Lots of layers. Being the smart person from North Alabama that I am, I quickly concluded that they were pouring the concrete for the bank safe.

Makes sense doesn’t it?  After all, it’s the most important thing at the bank.  It holds and protects the main product of the outfit.  And I found it interesting that it was established first.  That everything was built around this “heart”.  This most vital aspect of a business was planted first.

It reminded me of a challenge I gave our KidVenture volunteers a few weeks back.  I read an article that spoke of the incredible opportunity we have as those who minister to children.  We are a healing place.  A safe place for kids to hang.  A welcoming place.  And it’s an opportunity we shouldn’t take lightly.  The last line of the article was, “But remember, you can not give away that which you do not have.”

It was a reality check.  For me, for all volunteers.  A great reminder that as we plan each Sunday…and brainstorm for the next creative kid idea…as we round up 72 volunteers each week…as we organize crafts and curriculum…to check our hearts.  To make sure that we are madly in love with Jesus.  That we are passionate about the mission, not just the process.  And to always remember that we can’t give away that which we do not hold ourselves.

So the challenge is that each week, no matter your place of service – kid’s check-in, security, preschool, elementary, set up, tear down – to come prepared.  No, not just your cup of coffee.  No, not just your lion print out with glitter and glue.  No, not even with your best monologue or most creative brand new kid’s worship song.  Be sure to bring a pure heart.  One fresh with God’s inspired Word.  One filled to the brim with kindness, joy, patience, and grace.

Let’s build that first.